Situated in southern Sonoma County, California, and a part of northeastern Marin, the Petaluma River Watershed drains 146 square miles (380 km2).[three] The watershed is about 19 miles (31 km) long and 13 miles (21 km) vast with the Metropolis of Petaluma around its center. At two,295 ft (seven-hundred m), Sonoma Mountain is the best place in the watershed, and its western slopes drain to the Petaluma River by way of tributaries these as Lichau Creek, Lynch Creek, Washington Creek, and Adobe Creek. The lower twelve miles (19 km) of the Petaluma River move by way of the Petaluma Marsh, the largest remaining salt marsh in San Pablo Bay. The marsh addresses 5,000 acres (20 km2) and is surrounded by close to 7,000 acres (28 km2) of reclaimed wetlands.
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 In the marshes west of Lakeville, the river is joined by San Antonio Creek, at which place it gets the boundary between Marin County and Sonoma County. The river flows less than Point out Route 37 at Green Issue and enters northwest San Pablo Bay just north of Petaluma Place.
The Petaluma River Floodplain, west of Lakeville
Even though the river's supply lies around 300 ft (100 m) higher than sea amount, it descends to fifty ft (15 m) inside of about .four mi (600 m). The river is thoroughly tidal 11 mi (18 km) from its mouth, indicating its slight gradient as a result of the marshes down below Petaluma. The United States Military Corps of Engineers dredges this area to continue to keep it navigable by gravel barges and enjoyment craft.