FREE HETCH HETCHY

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Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Topic Author's Original Post - Oct 14, 2012 - 03:34pm PT
http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.php?topic_id=1895898&tn=20#msg1953530

http://www.hetchhetchy.org

Let us not just let San Franciscans decide the fate of Hetch Hetchy. It should be at the very least a California issue, if not a nationwide vote.

I have been following the arguments on this issue.

I may not have the right, or at least for the time being, of voting in my home state, but as I see it, the arguments for freeing Hetch Hetchy Valley outweigh the so-called benefits for San Franciscans (SF, a city I love and worked in and played semi-pro soccer in - and professionally on the reserves of the Golden Gate Gales - American Soccer League - and partied in, I love The City By The Bay, or as Herb Caen put it, "Baghdad By The Bay"). If SFers are going to vote in favor of keeping HH a 'prison', then these people are being selfish. There are alternatives. I have been reading just about every argument in the past few days.

FREE HETCH HETCHY

In John Muir's spirit, FREE HETCH HETCHY.

Hetch Hetchy is the nation's property, not the yuppies of San Francisco. Our collective property, not a bunch of West Bay Snobs. Up East Bay Grease. Tower of Power.

FREE HETCH HETCHY, for future generations. I have hung out in the HH Valley, climbed some there (probably put up a couple of FAs in the mid 1970s, who is to say, I don't care), dodged the rattler on occasion, soaked in the beauty of a valley inundated by the greed of water-hungry San Franciscans.

I am getting worked up about this, even though I am about 6,000 miles away. That valley needs to be returned to whatever original 'state' it was prior to SF meddling/mudding whatever waters there was.

We had the excellent movie and screenplay (always used as an example of scriptwriting) of Chinatown (1974) about the power of water struggles in SoCal.

I am trained in scriptwriting, I have three scripts on the back burner. Anybody interested in collaborating with me on a feature or documentary (two disciplines I have also studied and worked in) on Hetch Hetchy, contact me.

FREE HETCH HETCHY

Let's make it a statewide issue, indeed nationwide if need be. If it is just on the San Francisco ballot, those people who live there will vote for the dam staying. But it is a bigger issue than just one city.

Let us finally vindicate John Muir. Destroy the dam and let nature take its course. I may not see the fruits of such an action, but your children and grandchildren will. Let us look to the future.

I have climbed and hiked in the valley a number of times. In some ways, it is just as special and spectacular as the Valley.

FREE HETCH HETCHY


EDIT
ChrisMac, maybe someday you can come out with a guide to Hetch Hetchy, if so, I can contribute some. I love that valley, though it does have a lot of buzzworms. When the Ditch became too crowded my partners and I would retreat to Hetch Hetchy, while most would head to the Meadows (when 120 was open). I reckon Brian, Craig and I did at least a dozen FAs. Perhaps not. I don't care. Just being in a (an accessible) place where there were few climbers and the beauty, admittedly even the lake/reservoir, was wondrous. And the granite is as good as anywhere. I sometimes wonder, back in the mid 1970s, why other climbers did not see the the allure of Hetch Hetchy, to the best of my knowledge.

And CMac, Highway 108 has loads of climbing, perhaps a guide would be useful, Dingus knows better than I do, since I last climbed in that area in 1977 and I am sure there have been 'developments', so to speak. I know that I did some FAs back then, but never recorded them. Doesn't bother me so much, I just liked climbing on new territory. (Though I am a bit envious Dingus and Brutus did some routes off of Donnells Reservoir that I had eyed back in 1975. Kudos to you Dingus and the late Brutus).

Another EDIT
You know, I did, with partners such as Steve Fish, Brian Southworth and others did do some FAs in Hetch Hetchy, Highway 108, and Castle Crags (Castle Crags State Park), Patrick's Point State Park and a couple of other places - in the early 1970s (1972-1975).

Perhaps I should have notified the American Alpine Club, or whomever. But do you think I really ever cared. I climb for love, not for notice. There may be climbs out there that some may think they did the FA, when I did, yeah sometimes I wonder, but at the end of the day, I have more important issues on my agenda.

Being a full-time carer to a woman I love and keeping her out of state care... you can have your Astromans, K2s, Cerro Torres, whatever, but caring for a loved one... better than any peak (though I'd love to do the Cassin Ridge on Denali).
Chippychopperone

Social climber
SLC, UT
Oct 14, 2012 - 04:40pm PT
I second that vote
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Oct 14, 2012 - 04:47pm PT
Dammit, you beat me to it!

Third it!
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Topic Author's Reply - Oct 14, 2012 - 04:56pm PT
Thanks you two, what can I do from Ireland to help the cause? Free Hetch Hetchy.

And I will bump this thread when I can, to highlight the issue, not for any self-aggrandizing on my part.

We all need to get involved, for John Muir's sake at least. And more.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Oct 14, 2012 - 05:08pm PT
Sierra Club's reading list for those whose memories are weary and those too young to have them yet. If I find more stuff that's of interest to the restoration efforts, I will post up.

Thanks, PS, and I agree this should make it into the ST newsletter.

It is important to know WTF one speaks of when arguing a point.

There will be fireworks over this issue. It is like the elephant in the living room: you cannot ignore it for long and it won't go away.

http://www.sierraclub.org/ca/hetchhetchy/bibliography_hetchy.html
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Oct 14, 2012 - 05:11pm PT
The centenary of Muir's death will be December 24th, 2014 - maybe a propitious time?
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Oct 14, 2012 - 05:23pm PT
what can I do from Ireland to help the cause?

Well, how about calling out those two-faced SF liberals to walk the walk?
SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
Oct 14, 2012 - 07:06pm PT

I third the vote!!!
miwuksurfer

Social climber
Mi-Wuk
Oct 17, 2012 - 07:54am PT
This is important.
All you bay area folk who love climbing in Yosemite Valley, imagine if it too was under water. Or better yet, imagine two Yosemite Valleys right next to each other.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Oct 17, 2012 - 08:02am PT
Like so. Only more real.

Imagine that lake in Hetchy in YV.

Somebody oughta photoshop that one, with Tom Frost sailing in a Dutchman Jr., racing Jeff Mathis.

Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Oct 17, 2012 - 08:15am PT
Where will the replacement storage be located?

DMT
khanom

Trad climber
Greeley Hill
Oct 17, 2012 - 08:17am PT
DMT, in part they can raise Don Pedro (which already holds 2x HH) 6 ft or so. Have you seen how low DP is now?

Read http://www.hetchhetchy.org/theplan


Edit: No need to photoshop



See more at http://www.hetchhetchy.org/archival-photos


Edit 2: Another easy thing to do is more rain water harvesting instead of just letting it run into (and to an extent polluting) the bay.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Oct 17, 2012 - 08:18am PT
Always a good question. Alternatives. Hmmm...

Dam good, DMT.

But Khanom, that's owned by the Turlock ID, I believe. http://en.wikipedia/wiki/New_Don_Pedro_Dam*

they are looking at raising the dam again at Exchequer on the Merced, but again, Merced ID.

The PG&E dams, doubt that, and they generally don't store that much.

Maybe a rig like in It's a Wonerful Life?

*Just look it up on Wikipedia.

adikted

Boulder climber
Tahooooeeeee
Oct 17, 2012 - 09:23am PT
I agree....set he free!!
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Oct 17, 2012 - 09:26am PT
In addition to where the replacement will come from, the question also comes to mind, as to how will a nearly bankrupt state and country pay for it?
Jon Beck

Trad climber
Oceanside
Oct 17, 2012 - 11:17am PT
how will a nearly bankrupt state and country pay for it?

Speed up construction of the Fresno-Merced bullet train, double the ticket price and like magic, you will pay for the train and have billions to use to drain HH.

If you doubt that plan then how about the Republican version, an across the board 20% tax cut, the economy perks up and billions in extra taxes will be collected.
cliffhanger

Trad climber
California
Oct 17, 2012 - 11:28am PT
It doesn't cost anything to start the restoration of Hetch Hetchy. Just open the valve and let all the water out. Removal of the damn dam can be done anytime in the future as funding becomes available.

San Francisco has not only been taking the water, it has been illicitly profiting hugely in the generation of electrical power for 100 years. Require SF to use these many billions of illicit profits to fund everything that is needed.
Brandon-

climber
The Granite State.
Oct 17, 2012 - 11:33am PT
It doesn't cost anything to start the restoration of Hetch Hetchy

The water has to go someplace. Don Pedro would need work to handle the new water level. That costs money.
crasic

climber
Oct 17, 2012 - 11:36am PT
it has been illicitly profiting hugely in the generation of electrical power for 100 years

This claim has been debunked several times.
Ken M

Mountain climber
Los Angeles, Ca
Oct 17, 2012 - 11:47am PT
The problem with this whole issue, is the crackpot-y feeling involved with it.

When I see postings "just open the valve" "just raise the dam" "just don't worry about the lost power, the lost water......it makes me think that there is nothing serious behind this, other than

I want what I want what I want!

Well, good for you. Others want other things.

Beyond ANY doubt, we have a major water shortage problem in this state, and it is ONLY going to get a lot worse. Advocating for potentially losing part of that, without any clear path, reeks of the "don't cut any trees, ever" mentality, "don't build any homes anywhere, ever" type of thinking the Sierra Club group is famous for. "We'll screw things up, and it's your problem to fix" that they are so frequently advocating.

Besides, I'm a fan of the two water temples associated with HH
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Oct 17, 2012 - 11:47am PT
From Galen Rowell's "Hetch Hetchy: First Impressions" (1970):

I lay alone on the ledge watching the sunrise change the murky shadows across the valley into bold relief. As I looked across at the steep cliffs, I thought to myself that this could just as easily be Yosemite as Hetch Hetchy. Upon looking down, I suddenly realized how different things were. I saw no roads, buildings, or campfire smoke. I heard no motors, shouts or horns honking. I only gazed at a large dark pool of water, rippling quietly in the respective location where thousands of people swarm in Yosemite. I tried to reassure my old beliefs by repeating to myself, "Hetch Hetchy was ruined; Yosemite Valley was saved. Hetch Hetchy was ruined; Yosemite Valley. . ."
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Oct 17, 2012 - 11:50am PT
Right so I see the desire but what I don't see and have never seen is a workable proposal backed by people who are capable and resourceful enough to defeat legacy water rights and the toughest water politicians in the land.

DMT
khanom

Trad climber
Greeley Hill
Oct 17, 2012 - 12:39pm PT
Dingus, now may be the time. Prop F in San Francisco would create a task force to formulate a plan.

The Restore Hetch Hetchy group links to several previous studies and has the basic outline of what it feels is a workable solution. See my link above.
miwuksurfer

Social climber
Mi-Wuk
Oct 17, 2012 - 01:07pm PT
D E S A L I N A T I O N
QITNL

climber
Oct 22, 2012 - 02:42am PT
jaaan

Trad climber
Chamonix, France
Oct 22, 2012 - 03:42am PT
That's a great quote Clint. I knew I'd read something like that somewhere, but hadn't realised that it was Rowell.
throwpie

Trad climber
Berkeley
Oct 22, 2012 - 11:03am PT
If Hetch Hetchy lake was caused by an ancient rockslide, we would all have "Keep Hetch Hetchy Blue" bumper stickers on our cars.
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Topic Author's Reply - Oct 25, 2012 - 03:28am PT
bumpity bump, like I said I would.

There are some good posts on this thread about the viability of draining Hetch Hetchy and removing the dam, and indeed what if Hetch Hetchy Reservoir was actually a lake created thousands of years ago. But... that latter notion is a bit disingenuous, as it wasn't and was man created for San Francisco, BTW a town I love, have worked in, played football/soccer in and partied in.

I still say it should be 'freed' to its original state or as nearest as can be. Funding? Yep, a good point by some.
Silver

Ice climber
Oct 25, 2012 - 05:39am PT
I could give two cat shits about San Francisco. I guess we will learn how progressive these people are come voting day, but I will assume that over 90% of voters will not have been to Hetchy and could care less abut a dam and only about the water they drink.





Charlie D.

Trad climber
Western Slope, Tahoe Sierra
Oct 25, 2012 - 05:52am PT
It will never happen in my view, SF giving up a good fresh and reliable water source for some coastal foul tasting muddy lake water, most of which would surely have to come from the Delta...besides what DMT said up thread, which reminds me of what Mark Twaine said in his time, "whiskey's for drinking and water is for fighting over." So true in the dry Southwest.
Silver

Ice climber
Oct 25, 2012 - 05:59am PT
Except San franfreeko isn't in the south west and they can drink dirty pond water for all I care.
Charlie D.

Trad climber
Western Slope, Tahoe Sierra
Oct 25, 2012 - 06:33am PT
Silver, the entire state of CA is tied together in terms of water supply and distribution. SF may not think of themselves as the dry Southwest but they're joined at the hip to the region.
Silver

Ice climber
Oct 25, 2012 - 06:43am PT
Charlie we can debate western water all day long but we could skip all that and just get to the bottom line.

There are too many people in California period. You're overpopulated and while yes the weather is nice and you have some great scenery it is apparent to me there are just too many people living in the state and you have reached the tipping point and its only going down hill from now on.


We here in northern Nevada are banking on the fact that more an more of you will finally realize that Cali is a loser and leave for a better quality of living.

Silver

Ice climber
Oct 25, 2012 - 07:10am PT
Dingus

I should have wrote some not we.

I'm not banking on it but we seem to be attracting a lot of your people none the less.

Apple just started building the cloud and I tunes facility here so.....

It's a start.

Edit

I would also bet my left nut on the fact that if we had a better education system and less gaming and the scourge that's associated with gaming many more companies and people would be moving here quicker. Change takes time and as we evolve from gaming and construction based economy to a more stable economic base we will see more of you than we ever wanted to see.
can't say

Social climber
Pasadena CA
Oct 25, 2012 - 07:26am PT
"You're overpopulated and while yes the weather is nice and you have some great scenery it is apparent to me there are just too many people living in the state"

Brilliant observation! If so many of the folks who moved here stayed at home, then just maybe this place could have been kind of nice. But nooooo anytime the going gets tough in one messed up place or another, ya'll move out here. But my family moved here too, over 100 years ago for the same reason's. I see lic. plates from all the usual California hating places like TX or TN or GASP!!!111 NV. I'm all for self-deportation

khanom

Trad climber
Greeley Hill
Oct 25, 2012 - 07:44am PT
It will never happen in my view, SF giving up a good fresh and reliable water source for some coastal foul tasting muddy lake water

HH stores less than 25% of SF's water. Emphasis on stores. They can still have the water, just put it somewhere else before you flush it into the bay.
Ken M

Mountain climber
Los Angeles, Ca
Oct 25, 2012 - 08:56am PT
Except San franfreeko isn't in the south west and they can drink dirty pond water for all I care.

yep, that sentiment will have a convincing effect!
Silver

Ice climber
Oct 25, 2012 - 09:23am PT
I'm actually concerned that draining it will make Hetchy a better place After all this time. will lichen grow on the rocks again will life thrive on a floor of fine sediment. Will the life that once thrived there return?

It would be awesome if we just turned into one huge bass lake full of bass and lots of jet skis and ski boats and once a year we had a drag boat race........

Every spring sh#t loads of college girls showed up to party on house boats and did I mention we could actually swim in it, and pee in it if you wanted to pee in it and......

Can't say

Are you picking up the U Haul now or later?
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Nov 8, 2012 - 10:42am PT
As I predicted the hypocritical San Fran liberals have decided they don't
give a damn about Hetch Hetchy.
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Nov 8, 2012 - 11:08am PT
Good. I like Lakes and bigwalls and having water and less water wars.

Just wish they would open HH to overnight camping.
Roxy

Trad climber
CA Central Coast
Nov 8, 2012 - 11:31am PT
Heyduke Lives!
QITNL

climber
Nov 8, 2012 - 05:46pm PT
Just wish they would open HH to overnight camping.

There's a couple nice spots at the backpacker's camp above the dam. Wilderness permits & Evergreen Road are free. A few nearby NF campgrounds like Dimond O.
Ken M

Mountain climber
Los Angeles, Ca
Nov 8, 2012 - 06:03pm PT
There is a lesson here.

Environmentalists, who have created a reputation for not being the most honest brokers in situations, cannot just snap their fingers, put out a lot of wrong and misleading information, and just have people jump to their tune.

People will vote against their own interests, but not without clean, convincing evidence and information.

For me, it was a slam dunk. No clear picture of where $10 billion dollars comes from to do this. If not, then why throw $8 million away now?
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Nov 16, 2012 - 05:01pm PT
http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/Hetch-Hetchy-fight-not-over-activists-say-4026599.php

Sorry, Patrick. No commercial potential.


The following's from a recent letter of mine to a person living in SF.

Do you know this piece by Will Ackerman? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KkXdHnumyEY

It's about the nicest thing I've listened to in a long, long time. I was just sitting here reading and scanning onto my computer a book titled San Francisco Water & Power, put out by the utility, a history of the Hetch Hetchy system, start to present.

I guess you know the story. It's a sad one from the outdoor crowd's POV, but the die was cast long ago. There is a movement, noble but ultimately silly, to reduce the Dam. This means reducing most of the system, as well. It will not float. (Pardon the pun.)

The song reminded me of the loss of Hetch Hetchy as a natural reserve. I thought the song was a fitting way to express regret and loss and sweet recall.


I don't regret the decision by the voters. It is all water under the bridge, over the dam, and out the bay. It will return, but HH will not. I am trying to be the realist for a change. Too many jobs are at stake, too little in the way of an alternate water source, and in a climate of fiscal crapola it's enough we have one Major Boondoggle going on in the State, namely the High-Speed Rail money-maker-for-some-with-pull and destroyer-of-others-lives all in one. Again.

P R O G R E S S. Sure is expensive.

Perhaps the matter will be taken up again, like the activists say. Impossible dreams are not what Hayduke believed in, and neither should some of you. Because as climbing shows us, anything's possible.
Doug Robinson

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Nov 16, 2012 - 06:33pm PT
I disagree.

Started out thinking it should be drained, restored. Then spent a little time out there and changed my mind. 50,000 people a year go to Hetch Hetchy. 4 million a year in Yosemite.

Hetchy is quiet and wild.
The Valley is...well, you know.

Galen was right.

It's a little bit like the Owens Valley, which was saved by having LA steal the water. If not, it would now be another San Fernando Valley. I like it better as sage brush. A National Park quality landscape preserved -- quite inadvertently -- by a big city's water grab.
Captain...or Skully

climber
Nov 16, 2012 - 06:42pm PT
And it WILL be drained, one day. Of that you can be sure.
When? Doesn't matter, really. That's up to Mom, now.
Epic E

Big Wall climber
CA
Nov 16, 2012 - 07:44pm PT
F*#K HETCH HETCHY!
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Nov 16, 2012 - 07:52pm PT
I like your input, Doug. A man who's lived with the scene for decades knows the history. His views count for a lot with a lot of people. Thanks.

So many are virtual blanks when Hetch Hetchy comes up. They need to see it to believe. But they'll only see the Ditch, like you said. What a bitch.

I have a complete scan of the SF Water & Power book, their overview of the history and uses of the project.
Credit: mouse from merced
If it seems like a worthwhile thing, I will be glad to get the pages posted. The photos are sepia-toned and of high quality and the scans are, too. the total will amount to 58 pages. Give me some "hell-yeahs" and it'll be done.

How would a dam fit in below Lovers Leap? Sleep on that.

"Pity this busy monster, manunkind,
Not. Progress is a comfortable disease."--e. e. cummings
tom woods

Gym climber
Bishop, CA
Nov 16, 2012 - 09:23pm PT
Doug- I'm not sure about Hetch-Hetchy, but if Bishop would have been San Fernando if not for DWP, why isn't Benton huge? There's private land there, no DWP, but it's tiny.

I just don't buy that argument for Bishop. There are other towns out there just like Bishop. None are giant suburbs (of what?) like people imagine this place to be without LA.

Todd Eastman

climber
Bellingham, WA
Nov 17, 2012 - 12:16am PT
Climbers are often conflicted conservationists. Best use, wise use, no use, or my use?
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Nov 17, 2012 - 03:56am PT
Todd, I am conflicted. No question. Judging from what I see here and other places, you are spot on. We have the need for places to climb, AWAY from people, if possible, and for now, HH is just that.

It would be lovely to see acres of new granite available, which has been cleaned recently from its bath of a hundred years, one might hope, to climb on. However, at the same time, here come the tourons and the Park Concessionaire. That will happen. I don't care to see THAT happen. So, here I am, conflicted.

For those who say "F*#k HH," no problem here. Sometimes I'd like to say the same thing, dude. But I love the place.
ElGreco

Mountain climber
Nov 19, 2012 - 12:57pm PT
I see Galen's point, but that's the same as saying that we can't do better. Does it have to be tourons galore or defacing an iconic landscape with an artificial lake? I think that's a false choice, and we can and should do better. Who would vote to flood Yosemite Valley today??

HH is not a water source - the Tuolumne river is. HH is a storage facility, and a sweetheart deal for the city of SF, which profits both from the water and power under arrangements that slipped in under unique circumstances (panic and political wrangling after the fires caused by the 1906 quake in SF). For answers to how long it would take to restore HH valley, what it would look like etc, take a look here: http://www.hetchhetchy.org/theplan

In the meantime, how about building on the beta? I made a start on some roadside crags: http://www.mountainproject.com/v/hetch-hetchy/107751068

Pitch in!
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Nov 19, 2012 - 02:35pm PT
From P 2 of the first link above, The Plan

Deconstruction will require the use of heavy equipment, and some rough roads may need to be built for access. These can later be eliminated or converted to trails. Alternatively, a conveyor system could be used; this would be the least environmentally damaging means of removing materials from the valley and could be later modified to act as the means of transporting visitors into the valley.

Playing Old Scratch's advocate here, just so you don't assume I'm for or against the removal of Old Shaughnessy.

Roads that need to handle heavy equipment are not just something to sneeze at, especially in the steep valley of the Tuolumne. There is one road in from Mather Camp now. I am pretty sure it's the one that handled the heavy stuff as it went in to construct the dam and the one used to haul it out. This road is sufficient to the task if it's buttressed, widened, beefed up and well-paved.

I can only point to the Tioga Road's expense in the late fifties. That's silly due to inflation, and it was a lot longer. It cost less than eight million then. Probably a bit less. In the next phase, from Lee Vining to the Pass, it was done for at least eight million. The roads are still fine, but do not carry the weights we are thinking of here.

My point being, there's maybe a need for different routing for heavy stuff, but I just can't see that as needed. My objection to creating new routes is that once the state has put in a road, they are seldom abandoned. Or am I full of it? Remember, I am just the devil's surrogate. (He is too cheap to pay for real representation and is probably laughing his ass off over our human "progress," trusting under God, etc.)
Sierra Ledge Rat

Mountain climber
Old and Broken Down in Appalachia
Nov 19, 2012 - 03:45pm PT
Destroy the dam

Pizza and beer at my house tonight, then we're driving to the dam to make it happen. I gotta work tomorrow, so we gotta get back early.
ElGreco

Mountain climber
Nov 19, 2012 - 05:19pm PT
Mouse, from what I understand, removal of the dam itself is one of the options. It could also stay. Draining the reservoir is the main objective. My personal view is that we should tear the ugly f*er down! As with any government operation, the good guys have to keep watch if they want good outcomes.

Ledge Rat, see ya at your place! I'll bring beer and...
cuvvy

Sport climber
arkansas
Nov 20, 2012 - 09:13pm PT
Havent seen it in 30 years. I remember a beautiful lake.
)
yosemite 5.9

climber
santa cruz
Nov 21, 2012 - 05:35pm PT
Ever drink the water in San Francisco? It is delicious. I look forward to it every time I go.
Sierra Ledge Rat

Mountain climber
Old and Broken Down in Appalachia
Nov 21, 2012 - 05:38pm PT
Pizza and beer at my house tonight, then we're driving to the dam to make it happen. I gotta work tomorrow, so we gotta get back early.

Is the dam still there? Sorry, people, we smoked a little ganja with the pizza and forgot what we were supposed to do that night.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Nov 21, 2012 - 06:26pm PT
We can just start slow with a rappel/grafitti party next weekend.

Dammage report

http://usbr.tumblr.com/page/4
http://blogs.redding.com/dsmith/archives/2011/03/shasta-dam-hist.html

rumor: There are bodies buried in Shasta Dam.
Status: False
The scoop: Ask U.S. Bureau of Reclamation spokeswoman Sheri Harral about this tale and she practically groans - the result of having debunked the story hundreds of times in her career.
"It's completely not true," Harral said, adding that such tales pop up at each of the Bureau's largest dams.
Harral said it would have been nearly impossible for someone to be buried inside Shasta Dam.
Although 6.5 million cubic yards of concrete were poured into the dam non-stop over a 4 1/2-year period, it wasn't dumped in all at once.
Harral said the concrete was poured in stages to build partitions, not unlike a child's building blocks. Concrete was dumped from 8-cubic-yard buckets into 50-by-50-foot forms. Each form was five feet deep.
But one load from the bucket filled the form only about six to eight inches at a time, and it took nearly 60 buckets to fill one form.
"Even if you laid very thin and very still, there's no way you could get buried in the concrete," Harral said.

My late father, Boomer, was a grad from Shasta HS when he went to work on Shasta in 1942 for the summer. He ran one of the concrete vibrators eight hours a day in the forms. They'd dump the bucket and he was off to the side with the vibrator in front of him, but I don't understand how it was all rigged. He never explained that.

My mom's dad was a lifelong member of the operating engineers union and he went to Arizona, NM, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, and Guam on construction jobs ranging from dams to highways to canals. Exchequer, Shasta, Trinity, Oroville, Grand Coulee, Hoover, the California Aqueduct, and B-52 runways.
So you can see I've got a lot of family ties to the dams of the State.



mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Nov 21, 2012 - 07:09pm PT
Original Hetch Hetchy.
Original Hetch Hetchy.
Credit: mouse from merced
O'Riginal O'Shaughnessy Dam.
O'Riginal O'Shaughnessy Dam.
Credit: mouse from merced
Perps.
Perps.
Credit: mouse from merced
More perps.  They all look like someone's Dad or Grandad, don't they?
More perps. They all look like someone's Dad or Grandad, don't they?
Credit: mouse from merced
Ringleaders.  Boosters.  Perps.
Ringleaders. Boosters. Perps.
Credit: mouse from merced
aspendougy

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Nov 21, 2012 - 08:11pm PT
If you visit the website, and read "The Plan", there is nothing so outlandish about it, you find that the reservoir only has a modest portion of SF's water supply, and that this portion could be handled in other ways.

Seeing how it could come back over a period of years would be an exciting thing for scientists and others who are interested. It wouldn't have to become the organic Disneyland type environment of YV with concessions and the like. You could keep the concessions, parking, etc. outside and below the Valley itself.

Ken M

Mountain climber
Los Angeles, Ca
Nov 21, 2012 - 08:26pm PT
You lost.

Move along.

Don't come back with the same arguments that failed. You need a completely new approach, or you are wasting time, money, effort.

The anti-environmentalists LOVE this. They view this as an opportunity for very scarce environmental private dollars to be completely wasted, and not be available for other achievable objectives.

Don't help the opposition!
cupton

climber
Where the past and future meet
Nov 21, 2012 - 10:28pm PT
The problem with water in California is not a shortage of water but the high levels of water consumption. If water demand was reduced (which is entirely possible... many examples around the world) it would be possible to 'free hetch hetchy'.

Also, desal is not the answer... too expensive and should be a last ditch option. Reduce water demand by appropriate pricing, improving efficiency and promoting rainwater and stormwater harvesting. Once you build a desal plant you gotta pay for it and there is no going back. The water that comes out is not cheap!
Strider

Trad climber
ಠ_ಠ
Nov 21, 2012 - 11:51pm PT
As a "true" local to the area (I have lived less than 1 mile from the entrance to Hetch Hetchy for almost 7 years, off and on), I find it fascinating to see so many varied opinions on what should happen to my backyard. Even more entertaining is the fact that SF gets to vote on what happens where I live and I do not. Do not get me wrong, my concerns are not the economic effects to the area because regardless of what happens, where I work will do fine and in fact will probably flourish with increased traffic. I am more concerned with the environmental impact of the proposed deconstructionism.

In my opinion, I feel that environmentalists and Gov't officials can do as much damage or more than the tourists. I am not even thinking about what it would take to remove the dam itself. I have all the books and studies talking about it and most of what they say is ridiculous. But briefly imagine the aftermath, if the dam comes down then how many environmentalists will want access to the area to study? How many trails/roads/campsites will be needed for them to access and study the area for the next 5/10/20 years?

You think climbers will have any kind of timely access to the valley floor and the meager 200' climbs that have been buried under water?

And during/after the environmentalists, then comes the tourists. How many people will want to see the famed Hetch Hetchy Valley drained and in all its gory/muddy glory? What will it take to accommodate them? And 20/30 years from now, when the enviro's are done and bored of this place, what happens then? How about a few campsites, maybe a hotel and concessionary...plenty of space and money to go around...belated sorry for the smog, traffic and crowding like the Valley has.

Or imagine a pristine lake, a pristine valley, that it seems time has forgot. Imagine classic granite climbs that nobody has climbed before because they are too lazy to simply walk an extra few miles.

And don't get me wrong, HH has more than a few surprises for those who would ventures into her bosom. Doesn't matter the time of year, you have: heat, lack of water (ironic, no?), rattlesnakes, poison oak, camping restrictions, etc...

To selectively quote Rowell from Climbing #1, pg. 5 (thanks to my friend CC who transcribed this):

While climbers made over 400 routes in Yosemite, no technical climbs were made in Hetch Hetchy. Climbers had told each other legends of half submerged walls rising out of water and accessible only by boat. Boats are not allowed on the reservoir and swimming becomes rather more difficult when carrying many pounds of hardware.

Once again the sun was setting but now we were on the summit to enjoy instead of fear the ending of the day. The urgency of the climb was gone, and the view was to be savored and indelibly imprinted in our memories. We walked over the top of the rock to where the stream flowing over Tueeulala Fall crosses the granite slabs. We washed. We savored. The wildness of the area was our reward. Nowhere was the hand of man visible. The day is long gone when only nature's grandest sights thrill the heart of man. Wilderness is such a rare commodity that any really untouched place is per se beautiful. Leaving Hetch Hetchy we were thankful for the experience just finished and for the discovery that Hetch Hetchy is not a total ruin after all. The dam which had ruined it in comparison with other wilderness areas fifty years ago, has saved it from being over used.

With so few actual locals, I feel Hetch Hetchy lacks a voice like so many other prominent areas have. And in some small way I want to squeak for the status quo...



















-n

edit: I should be focusing on my Secret Santa project but you guys piqued my interest and I couldn't help myself.
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