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Santa Clarita CA
Today in
S.C.V. History
June 3
1855 - Ship leaves New York harbor bound for Tunis to acquire animals for the United States Camel Corps [story]
Camel Corps

Now and Then in the SCV | Commentary by Darryl Manzer
| Friday, Sep 5, 2014

mug_darrylmanzer2Sometimes there is just too much to do here in the SCV. Times, they have changed. Gone are the days when we would pool enough money to put some gas in the car and go cruising in “the valley.” We can do that here now. And it takes about 10 times the money to go one tenth of the distance.

Tonight at Vibe Studios on Lyons Avenue there is another karaoke coaching and open mike session. Andrea will listen and print out what she does and doesn’t like. It starts at 6:30 p.m. and ends around 9:30 p.m. Lots of fun and something the whole family can enjoy.

Saturday is the grand reopening of the Dagger Flat Trail and trailhead. This trail hasn’t been open in more than 30 years, and folks from the Santa Clarita Community Hiking Club have spent the summer getting it restored. There will be a ribbon cutting and then a hike on the newly restored pathway.

Much thanks to Dianne Erskine-Hellrigel and the CHC for the weeks of hard work in the hot sun. Come see the results. Just drive to what you think is the end of Sand Canyon Road, way past the homes. You’ll see the sign that says you’re in the Angeles National Forrest. Keep going. There will be a memorial sign on the right side. Just after that, follow the sign that says Santa Clara Divide Road. Park in the turnouts. Meet the shuttle at the white gate numbered road 3N17 (Santa Clara Divide Road).

When you’re done with the hike on the new trail, you might want to visit the Newhall Refinery restaurant or maybe Route 66 in Canyon Country.

adcountryfar092014_268x375It looks to be a rather warm day, so dress appropriately and bring plenty of water.

Not everybody knows about this next tidbit, but there is an event called the Agua Dulce County Fair. This year it happens on Saturday, Sept. 20. All kinds of things to see and do. You might want to enter the parade. Just go to www.aguadulce-countryfair.com and see all that is happening.

Remind me that I want to write about what kids wear to school these days. I was recently looking through the pages of the 1968 Tomahawk (the Hart High yearbook) and noticed that all of the girls wore skirts or dresses unless it was a uniform for sports, band or the mascot, Minnie Hi Hart. All of the boys were wearing long pants that had to have a belt. No T-shirts. Every shirt had to have a collar. So don’t let me forget.

By the way, I remember some of the girls complaining about skirt lengths. Today all I see are pants and very short shorts, and all are very tight to the body. I was born too long ago.

Could someone or maybe a bunch of you let me know the location you consider to be the center of Canyon Country? Is there a there, there? I remember now. That is where I can find Cemex, I think. Maybe we can show our soon-to-retire congressman, Howard “Buck” McKeon, where it is. That way he’ll know what he didn’t accomplish.

The vaunted cross-valley connector still goes across the valley. It has nearly as many stoplights as Soledad Canyon Road. Another time-saving route. I’ve got a great idea. How about the cleanup of Bermite be conducted in a manner that will allow a road to get through as soon as possible? The cleanup could continue on either side of the road but maybe, just maybe, some more east-west roads could be built. If not that, how about an interchange at Soledad and Highway 14?

Dagger Flat Trail

Dagger Flat Trail

If the drought continues, we might have to change the name of that lake in Castaic to “Castaic Pond.” Lake Piru could soon become “Piru Mudflats.” We need rain. Lots and lots of rain. I am worried that when we get it, those new homes across from the Saugus Speedway or Swap Meet could become an island. Sure, they built up the land, but if any of you have seen pictures of the 1938 flood and how the water reached up into the speedway/rodeo grounds and also did a huge amount of damage from Acton all the way to the ocean, you’d want to consider buying a boat.

We know how to build and design for earthquakes, but here in northern Los Angeles County we seem to forget that our rivers can still show some dangerous tendencies. Some “weather guessers” say the coming winter could bring significant amounts of rain. We should also remember that extended droughts often end with extended rain and other precipitation. Since much of the vegetation on our parched hills has died, we should review the term, mudslide.

So I’ve predicted the weather, given ideas for better cross-valley traffic patterns, suggested a couple of events to attend tonight and tomorrow and still have one more item to discuss.

With all that is happening in the world, it might be time for many of us (myself included) to spend at least a couple of hours on Sunday in a church. Well, maybe only an hour, but our country and our world need some prayers. No, make that a lot of prayers. Please join me in this little idea. Find a church, any church, and stop in to pray. We all could use a little of that.

Hope to see you there.

Darryl Manzer grew up in the Pico Canyon oil town of Mentryville in the 1960s and attended Hart High School. After a career in the U.S. Navy he returned to live in the Santa Clarita Valley. He can be reached at dmanzer@scvhistory.com and his commentaries are archived at DManzer.com. Watch his walking tour of Mentryville [here].

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  1. I used to live at the “end of the road” Sand Canyon Country. Was the trail there but unmarked?
    I remember traveling about some of the back trails aka as fire roads. One trail, as I recall ended up down in a valley with the river running through. Thought I was lost as hell and turning around to return to the point of origin was out of the question.

    My hiking days are past history but it sounds like a great hike (in the winter).

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