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DROUGHT & FLOOD - The History of Water in Santa Barbara and Montecito

Despite Santa Barbara’s reputation for nearly perfect weather, it has a history of devastating droughts and floods affecting the area for thousands of years.  Hydrogeologist Michael Hoover unravels the mystery of why this is so, providing the reader with an understanding of how geology and weather patterns affect the flow of water to the area. He traces the ingenious efforts of the local population to bring water to an arid area — from the Chumash to the Spaniards and Mission friars, to American Yankees in the nineteenth century, to the engineers who made possible technological achievements in the twentieth century. Hoover also explains the importance of wells, tunnels, dams, and reservoirs in their role in providing water. The reader will be most interested in learning about droughts, floods, fires, and even debris flows — and their ramifications in our world today.


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