Sunday, December 11, 2011

Oliver Lee Memorial State Park

Friday, December 9

The visitor center and campground sit on the alluvial fan at the mouth of Dog Canyon, at the base of the Sacramento Mountains.

While the park is named for rancher Oliver Lee, who had a house about 2 miles below Dog Canyon, a man nicknamed "Frenchy" (he was from France) had a cabin right next to where the campground sits today. He had 2 rooms, the original stone one to the left and the brick one he added later.

Frenchy had a few cows and horses, and built rock walls up the side of the mountain to keep them in.

The rock wall extends across the mouth of the canyon as well, and a remnant runs right next to our campsite.

After Don and I looked at the visitor center, we took a hike up the canyon a short way. There's running water in the canyon, and Oliver Lee built a flume to send water down to his ranch house.

The remnants of the concrete flume can be seen above the trail along the creek.

A couple hundred yards into the canyon the trail changes course--you can go no further up canyon.

The creek is a couple of feet wide here.

Plenty of snow remains in the shade. The creek sinks into the ground here and is no longer visible.

The trail took us back up the hillside to the rear of French's cabin.

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