Courtland Creek runs just south of High Street; presumably the valley was a footpath long before High Street was laid out in the 1800s. It has the peculiarity of crossing the old alluvial fan without cutting out a floodplain, as shown here in the geologic map.
I visited it a few weeks ago. As you go upstream along Courtland Avenue, this dirt road appears. Dirt roads are always interesting in this city.
It’s the old right of way for the Key Route line, and it leads to Courtland Creek Park, a cool streamside strip with some understated concrete work meant to evoke the history of the area. At one point there’s some unusually elaborate rockwork leading down to the creek itself.
Farther upsteam, too, is a cut into the side of the Maxwell Park hill; this view is looking back west.
And at the upper end of the park is one of those excellent mosaic trashcans that make this city so special.
As I’ve mentioned before, the topography of this part of Oakland, in the Allendale flat, suggests to me that the drainage has switched between streams at various times. It will be fun to poke around here some more.