The seep zone area of the CNR is located in the upper central campus, above Science Hill and Colleges 9-10. The 1/2 mile-long interpretive trail, located here, guides us through the array of habitats in the area–including redwood forest with good understory habitat, Douglas fir forest, seep vegetation, chaparral and mixed evergreen forest .

Plant Communities

  • Redwood forest with rich understory
  • Mixed evergreen forest
  • Patches of western azalea
  • Transitional chaparral with manzanita, ceanothus, and huckleberry

Seeps-how do they work?

The geology of this section is also of interest. The upper layer of soil is sandy and allows fast drainage of rain water producing a relatively dry surface habitat. Below the sandy soil lies a layer of mudstone. The water cannot penetrate this “table” so it runs along the mudstone layer and forming seeps in several areas where it comes up to the surface. The seeps running through the area support a diverse number of moisture-loving biota. Special features of this zone include an Azalea bog and the only extensive example of wetlands redwood forest on campus.


A seep allows these sedges thrive in an otherwise dry area.

The Seep Zone Interpretive Trail features interpretive signs highlighting the organisms, habitats, human history, and unique geology and hydrology of the site. Talk a walk on the trail and learn as you go! Signs were designed by Devin Peyton (ENVS 2012) as his senior internship project.