Synopsis

The Sacramento. A Transcendent River is the first comprehensive publication on this, one of the most important rivers in the world. Through crisp writing and over 190 stunning photos, it traces the river from its headwaters to the estuary, and its human history from before Euro-Americans to the present. Running throughout are incisive accounts of where the river has undergone alterations and degradations, often with damaging consequences.

Few rivers possess the richness and complexity of the Sacramento River. And few are subject to such overwhelming and contentious demands. This book illuminates all of the major issues surrounding this vital waterway.

The central theme of The Sacramento. A Transcendent River is the power and beauty of the natural river. While acknowledging that the Sacramento’s dammed and diverted waters are what made California what it is today, Bob Madgic nevertheless argues that a river functions best and contributes the most when it is allowed to proceed as nature intended.

The Sacramento. A Transcendent River is an important book. As the Sacramento goes, so goes California. As rivers go, so goes the planet. Once persons see what is to be preserved and gained from keeping intact the river flowing through their midst, or lost if it is stripped of its essential character, they should choose to be a river steward rather than  a river exploiter. The health of humankind hangs in the balance.

Bob Madgic is a former public school educator who has turned to writing in retirement. His last book was the highly acclaimed Shattered Air, A True Account of Catastrophe and Courage on Yosemite's Half Dome.

Beyond family, Bob's passions in life are conservation and fly fishing, both central to this book. He has degrees from Amherst College (B.A.) and Stanford University (M.A. and PhD.)