Book: The Russian River and its Watershed

The Russian River and its Watershed 

In 2020, Sonoma Land Trust, Sonoma Water, and artist Richard McDaniel have collaborated on a book, The Russian River and Its Watershed, that includes 41 full-color paintings and essays from local authors. 

The 110-mile Russian River flows like a ribbon of silver through the valleys of Mendocino and Sonoma counties, providing drinking water, a home for fish and other riparian critters, and irrigation for thousands of acres of grapes and other crops. But only people who live on its banks or who regularly spend time on its waters can attest to the changing beauty of the Russian River. The 41 full-color paintings by artist Richard McDaniel that comprise the heart of The Russian River and Its Watershed portray a river of many colors, moods and seasons. The voices of local essayists, including author and tribal leader Greg Sarris and historian Gaye LeBaron, add their own color to the book. From a sighting of a single osprey to a real-life fish story to a life-changing canoe trip, the stories told by the authors are as varied as the river itself.

Due to unprecedented demand, the book quickly sold out and copies are no longer available. The book will be available for viewing at the Sonoma County Library, and (when offices are open to the public) at Sonoma Water at 404 Aviation Blvd, Santa Rosa. The paintings may be viewed on Richard McDaniel’s website.