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Theme: Giving Back to the Parks

The Edgewood Preserve Docent Training Program

Docents: Sharing Nature with the Bay Area Community

Meeting the Land at Fairfield Osborne Preserve

Other Features

A Brief History of Bay Area Parks and Open Space
   Pt. 2: From the 1960s through the Present Day

Names on the Land
   Pt. 2, Santa Cruz County

Education Stations "Smooth" the Trails

"Dish" Argument Continues on New Terrain

Sudden Oak Death: New Victims


Letter from the Trail Center

Park News

Trail Center Notes

Upcoming Events

The Trail Companion

Winter 2001

Names on the Land
Part 2. Santa Cruz County

The names of features on the SF Peninsula and Santa Cruz Mountains reveal a rich and sometimes surprising history. The following are largely from Donald Thomas Clarke's Santa Cruz County Place Names (Santa Cruz Historical Trust, 1986).

Año Nuevo (Año Nuevo SP): Under the auspices of the Viceroy of New Spain, Sebastian Vizcaíno explored the coast of California in 1602-1603 in a attempt to find safe harbor for the Manila galleons. When the Vizcaíno expedition sailed north from Monterey in late December, 1602, the promontory was the first sighted in the new year, on Jan. 3, 1603. Vizcaíno named it La Punta de Año Nuevo. The English version, New Year's Point, of the name was in common use from 1853 onward; only with the establishment of the State Park did the Spanish version become reestablished.

Berry Creek (Big Basin SP): One of two Berry Creeks in the area, the longer one includes Berry Creek Falls, and was named for Tilford George Berry, probably an employee of the lumberman William Waddell, who had a cabin at the base of the falls. He disappeared one day and years later, his bones were found in the chaparral above Boulder Creek. The other Berry Creek flows into Big Creek and was named for Andrew Warren Berry, a settler from MA, who homesteaded there in 1859.

Gazos Creek (Big Basin SP): The original name, Arroyo de las Garzas (Heron Creek) was given because large numbers of "cranes" flocked to the shallow lagoon at the mouth to feed on fish trapped there in summer.

Magnetometer Road (Castle Rock SP): Now part of the Travertine Trail, the road served the Castle Rock Magnetic Observatory in the 1970s, which was a network of proton magnetometers operated by the USGS in an effort to detect and monitor tectomagnetic-related stress changes.

Tin Can Ranch (Castle Rock SP): A settlement called Tin Can Springs grew up ridge above the San Lorenzo River valley in the 1850s. At the time, canned foods were still a novelty and the empties were often strewn around campsites - and often commented on during the gold rush and later. The state geological survey called the trash "California conglomerate."

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