Unraveling the Mystery of Lake Dolores
En Español.It was just another creek map. Christopher Richard, a biologist and editor at the Oakland Museum, had been creating them for watersheds throughout the Bay Area. The one he started in the mid-2000s was for San Francisco. The survey data in front of him wasn't quite enough, so he dipped further into research — poring over explorers' maps and historical literature. Particularly confusing was a body of water in the Mission Bay watershed described by explorers and drawn by some cartographers: Laguna Dolores, known popularly as Lake Dolores. Richard studied at least 100 maps of the San Francisco peninsula drawn before 1912. None showed a large second body of water — most showed only the tidal inlet that had been navigable in the past up to what is now 16th and Harrison streets. Many maps showed the inlet as tidally connected; others drew no inlet to the Bay and simply inserted an isolated body of water, often titled Laguna Dolores. Something didn't ...
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