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Mapping the Many Hidden Waterways of San Francisco

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The Wiggle may be full of bikes today, but it turns out that the path has a longer history beyond giving cyclists' calves a break. The Wiggle actually borrows its shape from an old creek that was once used by Native Americans as a footpath through the surrounding sand dunes. San Francisco is unquestionably a city with water everywhere, from the bay to the ocean. But there is also a surprising amount of water within the city in the form of springs and streams. A new map and upcoming book from writer and natural history educator Joel Pomerantz uncover these hidden waterways, some of which used to provide drinking water for the city, as Wired reports.


Pomerantz's mapping project, which he calls Seep City, was funded via Kickstarter and shows the city's historical water sources as well as what remains. Only a few creeks still surface above ground today, and Pomerantz notes on his website that they can be difficult to find without his map:

Our city had significantly more water before it was developed. Consequently, most of the water shown is from historical sources. The purple squiggles are bedrock springs found today. Natural and artificial lakes present today are outlined in white. Creeks of today are highlighted yellow. An eight-foot-tall version of the map is also displayed on a kiosk at the Green Earth Grocery at 860 Divisadero Street, near Alamo Square. And be sure to look out for the companion book, due out later this summer.

· Mapping SF's Surprising Abundance of Springs and Streams [Wired]
· Seep City [Official Site]