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February 5, 2009

DHS Historical Society Expresses Opposition to Green Path North

At its monthly meeting this morning, the Desert Hot Springs Historical Society approved a resolution expressing its opposition to LADWP's Green Path North project that would construct powerlines on the western side of the city, across Big Morongo Canyon, along the San Bernardinos and into the high desert. The resolution cites the loss of our historic viewshed if the powerlines are built on that route.

Here is an especially relevant passage from The Waters Of Comfort by John J. Hunt (that I've quoted before) describing city founder L.W. Coffee's first night in the desert (it's 1932) that would become Desert Hot Springs:

Coffee's eyes scanned the valley below them in the rich, fading twilight. Ten miles away the splendid spike of granite called Mount San Jacinto stood majestic and proud. From her peak and descending gently over her escarpments was a skimpy mantilla of snow, now glowing in the orangey light. Below this the slopes were delicate shades of lilac and purple and black. The air was keen on the back of the throat and there was a great silence flung over this magnificent desertscape. In his mind, Coffee's dream was already materializing.

Following dinner that evening, Anderson related to his guests how difficult it had been to improve his quarter section and that there were no tangible returns of any kind from the homestead.

"Then how do you make ends meet, Bill?" Coffee asked him.

"Well, times I get over to Indio and do buildin', paintin', you know, odd jobs. Then I'll stock up on basics and head back over here, to the old place."

He drifted to a stop, as the trio became aware of the fading light shooting up behind San Jacinto projecting high over the mountains and the pass into a pale golden, red and purple fan of magnificent beauty.

It was Anderson who broke their reverie. "Like this every night, just about."

Up behind them in a canyon came the short sharp calls of a lone coyote, signaling the beginning of night on the desert.

They kept listening, but there was only the slight rustling of the creosote bushes. "Times it's lonely out here, but it's sure beautiful. I always thought this area would naturally attract more homesteaders like myself. Why, look at this view, and it's far better than you get over there at Palm Springs."

Filed under Desert Hot Springs,Green Path North | permalink | February 5, 2009 at 11:37 AM


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