Western Coastal and Marine Geology

U.S. Geological Survey
General Information Product 57
Version 1.0

South San Francisco Bay, California


By Peter Dartnell and Helen Gibbons


face of postcard

The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the California Coastal Conservancy and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, mapped the floor of south San Francisco Bay and adjoining land using single-beam sonar and airborne lidar (light detection and ranging). To learn more, visit https://pubs.usgs.gov/sim/2007/2987/.

View eastward. Elevations in mapped area color coded: purple (approx 15 m below sea level) to red-orange (approx 90 m above sea level). South San Francisco Bay is very shallow, with a mean water depth of 2.7 m (8.9 ft). Trapezoidal depression near San Mateo Bridge is where sediment has been extracted for use in cement production and as bay fill. Land from USGS digital orthophotographs (DOQs) overlaid on USGS digital elevation models (DEMs). Distance across bottom of image approx 11 km (7 mi); vertical exaggeration 1.5X.

Download the postcard (gip57.pdf; 2.1 MB)

For questions about the content of this report, contact Helen Gibbons

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