Rattlesnake Canyon

The Puzzler

RAY: This was sent in by Russell Howe and it's from my inland streams and waterways series. Russell writes:

"I live in Santa Barbara, California, and in late August, I was with a group of people who were taking a guided hike through Rattlesnake Canyon.

"The rattlesnake population in Rattlesnake Canyon is one rattlesnake per nine acres. We crossed a stream that was obviously low. The rainy season in Santa Barbara begins in November and no rain had come to the area since the previous April. So May, June, July and now August, no rain.

"The guide told us that every fall, just prior to the start of the rainy season, the stream level rises. She wondered why and did some checking. Was it because rain had occurred in some distant place and the off-flow had finally made its way to the stream? No.

"Was it because someone upstream, like maybe a factory that had been using water for whatever purpose, stopped using it? No.

"Was a dam opened up or did something like that occur?"

What could possibly explain why the water level would rise prior to the start of the rainy season?

Think you know? Drop Ray a note!

[ Car Talk Puzzler ]

Support for Car Talk is provided by:

Donate Your Car,
Support Your NPR Station

...and get a tax break!

Get Started

Find a Mechanic

Promo tile

Rocket Fuel