Deserts

PASSAGES: DON PARKER, FORMER SHERIFF’S SEARCH AND RESCUE COORDINATOR, DIES OF BRAIN CANCER

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 18, 2018 (San Diego) – Sergeant Don Parker, who saved many lives as head of the San Diego County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue operations for many years, died on Valentine’s Day after battling glioblastoma brain cancer, with which he was diagnosed last May.

CIRCLE OF ART SHOW AND SALE IN BORREGO SPRINGS MARCH 10-11

 

East County News Service

February 15, 2018 (Borrego Springs) – Art lovers can view works of over 70 fine artists at the 29th annual Circle of Art Show and Sale on Christmas Circle in Borrego Springs. This popular event will be held Saturday, March 10th from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, March 11th from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“PROMISE ZONE” BILL BY HUESO AIMS TO HELP BLIGHTED RURAL AND TRIBAL AREA

 

By Miriam Raftery, East County Magazine

February 10, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) -- Legislation introduced by State Senator Ben Hueso aims to expand a successful “promise zone” program originally used to improve inner city areas in the city of San Diego.  If enacted,  Senate Bill 635 would allow blighted rural and tribal communities as well as cities with populations under 200,000 people to also apply for promise zone designation.

JACUMBA HIKERS AND WALKERS HEAD TO DESERT VIEW TOWER FEB. 18

 

East County News Service

February 7, 2018 (Jacumba Hot Springs) – The Jacumba Hikers and Walkers  will lead a guided hike this Saturday to the Desert View Tower, one of the oldest roadside attractions/historic landmarks in this region, with a spectacular view of Imperial Valley.

DON YOUR “DESERT DRESSY” ATTIRE FOR ANZA BORREGO FOUNDATION’S BOOTS BALL MARCH 3

 

By Miriam Raftery, East County Magazine

February 3, 2018 (Borrego Springs) - You’re invited to don your “desert dressy” attire and finest hiking boots for the second annual “Boots Ball” hosted by the Anza Borrego Foundation on Saturday, March 3 from 2-5 p.m.

LOCAL LEVELS OF OZONE PEAK IN MOUNTAIN AND DESERT AREAS

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 30, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) – You might be surprised to learn where the highest levels of ozone pollution are in San Diego County. Hint: it’s not urban areas in local cities, but rather, communities in East County’s mountains and desert areas.

COUNTY TO ACCEPT COMPETING BIDS FOR ANIMAL SERVICES

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 24, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) – County Supervisors on Tuesday approved a proposal to accept bids from outside animal welfare organizations seeking to compete against the County’s Animal Services Department to provide services in the County’s unincorporated areas, including rural, desert and mountain regions in East County as well as neighborhoods such as Spring Valley, Alpine, and Lakeside. In East County, the city of Santee will also be impacted.

ANZA BORREGO DESERT STATE PARK RECEIVES INTERNATIONAL DARK SKIES DESIGNATION

 

By Miriam Raftery, East County Magazine

Photos credited to ©Dennis Mammana/dennismammana.com

January 22, 2018 (Borrego Springs) – Night sky photographer Dennis Mammana made this announcement Friday on Facebook: “Proud to announce that our thousand-square-mile Anza-Borrego Desert State Park has just received its official designation as an International Dark Sky Park. That means that the Dark Sky Community of Borrego Springs is now completely surrounded by an official Dark Sky Park!”

PHOTO OF THE WEEK: RAINBOW OVER BORREGO SPRINGS

 

East County News Service

Photo:  © 2018 Peter Tellone – photographer

January 9, 2018 (Borrego Springs) – Photographer Peter Tellone sent in this postcard-perfect image of a rainbow after the storm in Borrego Springs.

You can view more of his works at petertellone.com.

NEW YEAR’S DINNER/DANCE AT RAM’S HILL IN BORREGO SPRINGS

 

East County News Service

December 30, 2017 (Borrego Springs) – Rams Hill Golf Resort in Borrego Springs is hosting a New Year’s Eve dinner/dance on December 31st starting at 5:30 p.m.   Before the ball drops, you can enjoy live Sinatra-esque music from the Golden Era.

The evening begins with tray pass hors d’oeuvres, followed by a three-course meal at $99 a person.

CARRIZO GORGE HIKE DECEMBER 30 INCLUDES IMPOSSIBLE RAILROAD VISTAS

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

December 27, 2017 (Jacumba Hot Springs) – Hi ho! The Jacumba Hikers and Walkers are hitting the trail to Carrizo Gorge and Walker Canyon on December 30th.   This six mile hike is rated hard due to a steep down and up trek across the gorge, where hikers will see an up-top view of the “Impossible Railroad” at De Anza Resort, then head north on an old road to an abandoned railroad settlement in historic Walker Canyon.

FROST ADVISORY FOR DESERT AREAS

 

East County News Service

December 22, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – The National Weather Service has issued a frost advisory for tonight that includes inland desert regions in San Diego County. Temperatures could reach as low as 25 degrees in some places.

Pet owners are advised to bring pets inside tonight and to bring in or cover plants sensitive to cold, such as tropical plants or citrus.

SDG&E RESTORES POWER AFTER PROLONGED OUTAGES; RESIDENTS WHO SUFFERED STRESS AND LOSS WANT CHANGES FOR FUTURE

 

 

Residents angered at loss of water pumps, alarm systems, refrigeration, comunication and heat during outages up to a week in some areas that have suffered repeated outages

By Miriam Raftery

December 12, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – SDG&E announced last night that it has fully restored power to all customers who were de-energized due to “public safety concerns” following a week-long red flag warning with strong gusty winds, low humidity and dangerous fire conditions.  An SDG&E media release states, “After crews inspected power lines all day in coordination with contract firefighters who were on hand to ensure a safe restoration process, power was turned on for all remaining customers. Field crews patrolled on the ground and in the air. Aerial inspections were completed by five helicopters in rural, mountainous areas."

Power remains out to 56 customers in the Lilac Fire zone in North County, where full restoration is expected early Tuesday evening. All 43 poles damaged in the fire will be replaced with fire-resistant steel poles and thicker, stronger wires, SDG&E indicates, adding, ““We understand that being without power, for any reason, is an inconvenience and we appreciate the patience we have received from our customers.”  For current information on outages and restoration times, visit sdge.com/outage.

Across East County,  many residents in rural, mountain and high desert towns have taken to social media to voice concerns over the prolonged outages.  Although SDG&E says it did provide advance notice to 170,000 customers of possible planned outages due to high winds and fire danger, before shutting off power to many thousands of homes, many rural residents say that’s not enough – and they want changes made. Below are highlights of residents' concerns and proposals.

SINATRA AND FRIENDS: TRIBUTE JAN. 6 AT BORREGO SPRINGS PERFORMING ARTS CENTER

 

East County News Service

December 1, 2017 (Borrego Springs) -- Sinatra and Friends pays tribute to the man and his music featuring countless songs, synonymous with Frank Sinatra, as well as many other memorable favorites people have come to love.

HERE WE COME A -CAROLING, BORREGO STYLE DEC. 9-10

East County News Service

December 1, 2017 (Borrego Springs) – Borrego Springs Performing Ars Center will present “Here We Come A-Caroling, Borrego Style” on Saturday, December 9 at 7:30 and 9 p.m. and again on Sunday, December 10 at 3 and 4:30 p.m. 

You’re invited to come sing carols with neighbors and friends while being entertained by Borrego's finest musicians and orators.  A program of songs, heartwarming stories and surprise appearances will lift your spirits and add joy to the Holiday season as you celebrate, Borrego style.

BORREGO SPRINGS BREAKS GROUND ON NEW PARK, LIBRARY AND SHERIFF STATION

 

East County News Service

October 23, 2017 (Borrego Springs) -- The County broke ground over the weekend on a public park, a new library and a Sheriff’s station in Borrego Springs. 

The modern library will be 13,500 feet and equipped with energy efficient features for zero net energy use—also provided plenty of air-conditioned space for residents to escape extreme heat. The new library will be three times the size of the old one that it will replace and will also include a homework center, children’s area, community room and more.  Read details: http://www.sdcl.org/PDF/sdcl_br-faq.pdf

JACUMBA HIKERS TREK TO CARRIZO CREEK ON SATURDAY, OCT. 21

 

East County News Service

October 18, 2017 (San Diego's East County) - On Saturday, October 21st, the Jacumba Hikers and Walkers are hitting the trail to Carrizo Creek.  This is a four-mile round trip hike rated moderate.  Hikers will be traveling a short distance on a county maintained dirt road, through a short tunnel to the “Echoing Mountains,” down a cliff to a creek bed strewn with boulders, overgrown shrubs and Tamarisk trees. Following the creek bed, you will encounter numerous pools and waterfalls.

HIGH DESERT MOUNTAIN YOGA RETREAT OCT. 31-NOV. 3

 

A Weekend Getaway in San Diego's East County

By Miriam Raftery

October 12, 2017 (Jacumba Hot Springs) – You’re invited to soak and stretch your way to relaxation and Nirvana at the second High Mountain Desert Yoga Retreat, tucked among boulders high in the In-Ko-Pah and Jacumba mountains near the eastern San Diego County line.

This four-day healing event from October 31 to November 3 will include natural sulfur hot spring pools, healing sessions at the Desert View tower including Kundalini Tantra Yoga, Reiki healing, and crystal sound healing. Guests will also savor delicious vegan meals scenic hikes and some desert surprises, plus a three-day stay at the nearby Jacumba Hot Springs Resort.

RESORT TO NATURE AT 52ND ANNUAL BORREGO DAYS FESTIVAL AND PARADE OCT. 21-22

 

 

East County News Service

September 21, 2017 (Borrego Springs) - The 52nd Annual Borrego Days Desert Festival returns to showcase qualities that make Borrego Springs so unique as both a weekend getaway and a world all its own with beautiful weather, incredible star gazing, resorts, and the free Borrego Days Festival which kicks off Saturday, October 21 from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and continues through Sunday, October 22, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

REVISITING OCOTILLO

 

The ECOreport does an update on one of California’s most controversial wind farms – Ocotillo, five years later

By Roy L. Hales

Source:  The ECOreport

Photo, left: Turbine T126 after the collapse – Parke Ewing photo

September 3, 2017 (Ocotillo) - The Ocotillo wind farm went online almost five years ago. Were they not documented in such meticulous detail, some of the  reports coming from the tiny desert community this project surrounds would be difficult to believe.  I once received a constant stream of YouTube videos and reports from this project. It was one of the sites that shaped my perception of the energy sector.  To some extent, I’ve moved on from this story since then, but I always knew I would be revisiting Ocotillo.

DANGEROUS HEAT WAVE FORECAST SUNDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY

 

East County News Service

August 26, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – The National Weather Service is warning of a “dangerous heat wave”  forecast to hit San Diego County starting Sunday mid-morning through at least Wednesday.   Excessive heat warnings and advisories have been issued for the region, with Monday and Tuesday expected to be the hottest days. Even the coast won’t be spared from this heat wave.

FORWARD SPREAD HALTED ON FIRE NEAR BORREGO

 

East County Wildfire and Emergency Alerts

Photo:  Ranchita Sheriff substation

Update August 27, 8 a.m.  The fire is now 80 percent contained and Montezuma Valley Road is reopening.  Full containing is expected later today, Cal Fire reports.

Update 9:30 p.m.  The Montezuma fire is now 60 percent contained.

August 26, 2017 (Borrego Springs) -- The Montezuma Fire has charred 62 acres and is now 20 percent contained, with forward spread stopped, Cal Fire reports.

The blaze began this afternoon when a Jeep Fire ignirted dry brush along Montezuma Valley Road near Borrego Springs. 

SHOW YOUR BEST SHOTS: ANZA-BORREGO DESERT PHOTO CONTEST

 

East County News Service

August 5, 2017 (Anza-Borrego) -- Calling All Photographers!  The 2018 Anza-Borrego Desert Photo Contest is now live and ready to accept your entries!

The contest is meant to encourage desert lovers and photography enthusiasts to capture their favorite views, moments and adventures in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. Since the theme of the contest is the unique and natural beauty of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, all photographs must be taken within the Park boundaries.

SUNSET TO STARS: DINNER EXCURSIONS IN ANZA BORREGO DESERT AUG. 11 AND 16

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Dennis Mammana

July 26, 2017 (Borrego Springs) – California Overland Adventures invites you to a 5-hour sunset-to-stars excursion to experience the Anza-Borrego Desert on August 11 or August 16  from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. including an off-road adventure to rugged badlands, dinner and stargazing in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, which USA Today has called a “stargazer’s paradise.”

Overnight camping options are also available on separate dates.

ADVENTURES ON THE PACIFIC CREST TRAIL: JULY 18 AT JACUMBA LIBRARY

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 10, 2017 (Jacumba Hot Springs) – Adventurer Dana Law will present a travelogue about the West Coast’s national scenic trail on Tuesday, July 18 at the Jacumba Library (44605 Old Hwy 80, Jacumba Hot Springs, CA 91934 at 6 p.m. On 31 separate journeys over 13 years, Law completed all 2,650 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail, which begins in California at the Mexican border and ends at the Canadian border in Washington.

CROSS IN OCOTILLO WELLS IN CROSSHAIRS OF CONSTITUTIONAL ISSUE

 

By Miriam Raftery

June 26, 2017 (Ocotillo) - In 1966, Jim Bruce Robinson was killed in action during the Vietnam War. He was 21 years old.  A memorial plaque and towering cross were erected in his memory in Ocotillo Wells, across the street from the home where his family still lives. 

BORREGO SUN PUBLISHER NOT ON BOARD WHEN HIS PLANE BROKE APART ON LANDING

 

 

East County News Service

June 25, 2017 (Borrego) – A private plane owned by Borrego Sun publisher Patrick Meehan broke apart during what the pilot described as a “nice and soft” landing last week.  The incident forced closure of Palomar Airport for several hours.

Meehan was not on board and there were no injuries.

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