And if you say to me tomorrow ~ Oh what fun it all would be ~Then what’s to stop us, pretty baby ~ But. . . What Is and What Should Never Be– Led Zeppelin
Growing up in LA with hippy parents back in the 70’s pretty much guaranteed that I would turn out with rock n roll music and philosophy stitched into the very fabric of my being. So please, allow some grace here – rock n roll poetry is seared so deeply into the fissures of my brain that it spontaneously erupts in the most unexpected moments. . . like now, as I struggle to craft a message explaining in two short paragraphs, the strategy developed by no fewer than 12 stakeholders for Bonanza Flat’s management plan. And now I remember, Every Picture Tells A Story Don’t It?
Below are two maps of one trail system at different points in time. . . is gone, the song is over, thought I’d something more to say. . . Look closely and you’ll see the first map resembles a spaghetti-bowl that was once the trail system (aka manmade disturbances) in Bonanza Flat. This was prior to the implementation, five years ago, of a hard-won, very expensive conservation/recreation easement. This map represents the ‘What Should Never Be’ Pretty Baby.
What Is. . . easy to see in the more recent map of the area is that illegal/social trails have disappeared. Those were the trails that Never Should Have Been. New trails – many of which, where appropriate, are improved/re-routed legacy trails – were constructed to avoid wetlands, calving/nesting grounds and steep terrain. This improved system creates loops and connectivity to disperse trail use, moving people to the places they’ll enjoy while preserving conservation values. This is What Is and What Should Be.
As we the modern-day stewards of an ancient land, now called Bonanza Flat in the legal documents of a municipality and a land trust, work toward sustainable, environmentally friendly use of the land, I contemplate Mick Jagger’s words of wisdom, “The past is a great place and I don’t want to erase it or to regret it, but I don’t want to be its prisoner either.”
The future will come, so let’s embrace it, preserve it and enjoy it!