Rivers in the San Diego Area

Mission Gorge, cut by the San Diego River
Mission Gorge, cut by the San Diego River

The rivers in the San Diego area vary greatly in length and volume. Due to the geography in San Diego County, most of the rivers run east to west along fairly linear paths. While some of the larger rivers and streams carry water year-round, most only flow during winter and spring. In contrast to the Los Angeles area, the rivers in the San Diego area have much less controls along their banks. All of the rivers, however, have dams along their courses. Most of these dams were constructed for municipal use in the various cities throughout the county.  This page will have photographs and information about each river and their drainage areas.

Rivers from North to South:

  • San Luis Rey River
  • Escondido Creek
  • San Dieguito River
  • Los Penasquitos Creek
  • San Diego River
  • Sweetwater River
  • Otay River
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