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Liz Writes Life 2-28-17

Liz Writes Life

Feb. 28, 2017

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA

Two days after I reported, in last week’s column, that the local Timbervest properties were not going to be purchased by a non-profit group, Siskiyou Co. Dist. 5 Supervisor, Ray Haupt, received an email saying the non-profit was indeed going ahead with purchasing the properties – without the support of the Siskiyou Co. Supervisors. Ray told me that Peter Colby, the spokesman for the Western Rivers Conservancy, told him the non-profit would aggressively pursue the properties that range from Fort Jones on the west side of Scott Valley around and into the Callahan area.

Ray was not happy with the news and said Western Rivers Conservancy “is in for a fight” from Siskiyou County as Colby has bluntly told the county supervisors its intention is to take the water rights allotments and shepherd that water down the Scott River just for fish. Under California Water Law, when a water right user does not use his water (usually for irrigation), it can then be utilized by the water right holders below.  Hum, this does not sound very neighborly!

Colby’s is not the first non-profit to challenge state water law in this manner. The Nature Conservancy is doing the same thing in Shasta Valley. It actually gave or sold the water rights, to a ranch it purchased, to CA. Dept. of Fish and Wildlife. Yes, DFW is trying to shepherd the water the same way. Guess these non-profits think they can color the water – maybe red – to keep it from being utilized by other water right owners!

But, the saga doesn’t stop there. Earlier last Thursday, Shirley Gilmore called me to tell me that a man called her last fall about the Callahan Water District’s water rights. Callahan residents’ only water source is from East Boulder Creek. The man talking to Shirley said he was representing a group that was planning on buying the Timbervest properties and would then take the water rights away from the Callahan Water District. Talk about threatening!

After communicating with Shirley, Ray said he and Michael Kobseff, who is chairman of the Siskiyou Co. Supervisors Board, were already talking to our county CAO and counsel about the situation.

Stay tuned, I think there will be more on this saga next week!

Native Daughters

A wonderful Tea Party was held by the Native Daughters of the Golden West last Saturday at the Etna High School multi-purpose room. It was filled with beautifully decorated tea sets, scrumptious sandwiches, cookies and 100 smiling women. Three Etna FFA young ladies worked as servers.

The theme for this year’s event was one-room school houses in Scott Valley. Believe it or not, more than a dozen raised their hands when asked who had attended a one-room school house.

Historical pictures, and several ladies, shared stories of attending one-room school houses. Melanie Fowle and Carol Maplesden attended a school house at the south end of the valley — about 15 years apart. Both rode a horse to school and tucked their dresses inside their jeans during the ride or changed at school into the mandatory dress.

Of course, our last operating one-room, turned into a two-room, school was Quartz Valley, which closed just a few years ago.

Mike Adams

Remember, a memorial will be held this Sunday, March 5, 2017 for Mike Adams at the Fort Jones Community Center at 2 p.m. Mike died unexpectedly last October and was serving as president of Scott Valley Protect Our Water and on the Yreka Tea Party Patriots steering committee. Please bring a dessert to share.

Scott Valley Protect Our Water will hold its next meeting on Thur. March 23, 2017 at the Fort Jones Community Center at 7 p.m. Andrew Hurlimann is now the president.


Early in February we were out of potatoes, so Jack was able to locate where a plant had been. He scraped off the several inches of mulch and dug up six pounds of really big Russet potatoes. Only one had a sorta-soft spot from freezing. About a week later, during one of those really warm days – when it wasn’t raining – he used the push-plow and worked-up half of the garden to discourage weeds.

A week ago, we went out and raked up a bunch of pine needles and I found a whole bunch of my Jessie Hammond daffodils along side of the house. They are about eight-inches tall and will likely be blooming by mid-March. This year, Easter is late on April 16. I hope they will still have flowers. It was so warm that we worked in our t-shirts, but only for that one day. Jack also pruned back the two hardy rose bushes.

The rhubarb is just starting to peek through the soil and Jack dug some carrots last week. They are still pretty good although several were tangled and pithy and got tossed in the compost pile.

Last month, the three-inch tall garlic stems had some yellow on them. I guess from the snow and cold, but now they are about seven-inches tall and green. And I see the red-flowered bee balm that my brother and his wife gave us is coming back.

A spring fling hit me, when I stopped by the feed store — I bought three blooming primroses. Took nearly a week to get them planted and they have already been snowed on twice. That got me in the mood for more flowers, so I grabbed my favorite grubbing hoe and started digging out the bunch grass and weeds under the pine tree. Only about three-quarters got dug up and my good intentions have not mustered enough gumption to get the other six-feet worked up. I must say the soil was perfect for grubbing – not too wet and not too hard. My goal is to plant more four o’clocks, cosmos and transplant coreopsis into that flower bed.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 2-21-17

Liz Writes Life

Feb. 21, 2017

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA.

The U.S. Forest Service held its first snow survey on Feb. 1st in the mountains surrounding the Scott Valley. Guess what? Yep, measurements were over 130 percent higher than historic averages. Unfortunately, last week’s warm temps and rain have likely lowered that percentage, but here is a quick rundown of the first 2017 results.

Middle Boulder #1 had 61.5 inches of snow — average of 50 inches. Middle Boulder #3 was at 69 inches — average of 49.2 inches. Both of those stations are over 6,000 feet in elevation. Dynamite Meadow at 5,700 elevation feet measured 47.5 inches — average of 38.3 inches. Swampy John above Etna was 80 inches — average of 57.4 inches (5,500 feet elevation) and Scott Mt. at 5,900 feet elevation was 67.5 inches — average of 41 inches.

Once again, we have witnessed the flooding waters creating Scott Valley Lake near Fort Jones as Kidder Creek and Scott River overflowed their banks. Sure do hope the Oroville dam overflow spillway holds. Flooding is causing problems throughout the rest of the state. It is frustrating that our weather can’t even itself out instead of famine-or-feast in the rain/snow department.

There really should be many more dams and reservoirs catching this rain. Yep, the State of California has really messed up in a variety of ways, including not reinforcing the spillway at Oroville dam with rebar. Ugh!

Tea Party

The Yreka Tea Party will hold its next meeting in Fort Jones at the Community Center on Feb. 28, 2017. Time is 6:30 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. James Roseman, executive director of the Siskiyou Domestic Violence & Crisis Center will speak on “Erin’s Law.” There will be a short video titled: “Ending the Nightmare.” It is about child abuse, specifically exposing and working to end child sexual abuse in the U.S. The statistics are daunting with one in four girls and one in six boys being sexually assaulted before the age of 18. And it is usually by someone they trust in their family, friends, neighbors or coaches. Erin’s Law teaches children how to protect themselves. For more information, call Louise Giatto at 530-842-5443.


A memorial service will be held on Sunday, March 5, 2017 for Mike Adams, who passed away last October. It will be held at the Fort Jones Community Center at 2 p.m. Please bring a dessert to share.

When he died, unexpectedly of heart problems, Mike was serving as president of Scott Valley Protect Our Water and was on the steering committee for the Yreka Tea Party Patriots.


Ray Haupt, Siskiyou Co. Supervisor of Dist 5, and Preston Harris, who is project coordinator for Siskiyou RCD, spoke at the last meeting about the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act that was passed into law in 2014. Preston said 11 years of local studies show Scott River is not the primary source of the aquifer – it is supplemental. That is good news for agricultural irrigation. He added, “We are a snowmelt driven system. We are not a groundwater dependent system.”

The Scott River Groundwater Advisory Committee measures 35 wells each month as part of its groundwater study. Preston said the aquifer had recharged significantly, even before all this winter snow and rain. He added the work with Dr. Thomas Harter and U.C. Davis is a landowner-driven process and ties-in well with the California’s SGMA.

Ray said the county is on-track to meet the first step demanded by the state’s new groundwater management act, which is in June. The actual management plan must be written by 2020. The state wants to know how much water comes in and how much goes out in the sub-basin.

The next step is to form sub-basin subcommittees of landowners that will participate in developing the plan. This is huge folks. We do not want state agency bureaucrats telling us how we can use our groundwater. This process undertaken by the Siskiyou Co. Natural Resources Dept. will keep groundwater management under local control.

Ray also shared that the CA. Dept. of Fish and Wildlife spoke to the county supervisors regarding the dreaded 1602 Permit that is needed to move gravel to obtain legal water right allotments. “Vague” describes the presentation. Several farmers asked for clarification on quickness for when emergency permits should be issued. With the high waters this year, excess gravel and debris will be a problem at headgates.

It was suggested for DFW to hold several Town Hall-type of meetings, so they could specifically answer questions from irrigators, which was taken under advisement. We shall see.

The Marijuana Ordinance is back in the news. Because California’s complicated new law was passed in the November election, the county will now need to modify its ordinance to agree with state law. Crazy as it sounds, the county allowed 12 plants to be grown by those who had prescriptions. The new state law reduces that number to just six plants — if you do not have a commercial license. Oh, and the California commercial license is not yet available.

About 25 marijuana growers attended the supervisors’ meeting and complained that they can’t get by with growing just six plants.

Forest sale

Good news! The sale of Timbervest forest properties surrounding Scott Valley from Fort Jones to Callahan did not go through. The non-profit group expected the county supervisors to support the purchase. Ray said the supervisors did not support the non-profit, because it was planning to strip the water rights and give them to California DFW, which would herd that water for fish – away from agriculture.


Biggest news is in regards to BLM Supervisor Daniel P. Love, who is being investigated for deletion of 100s of documents before a congressional investigative committee issued a subpoena, obstruction of a congressional investigation and witness tampering. This should bode well for Bundy defense.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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BOR is a bad player — Liz Writes Life 2-14-17

Liz Writes Life

Feb. 14, 2017

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA.

A devastating flood disaster along the Klamath River was avoided last weekend — and it was because Siskiyou Co. Supervisors, officials and employees instantly jumped into high-gear.

Siskiyou Co. Natural Resources Specialist Elizabeth Nielsen quickly relayed a Press Release that she found on the county’s Office of Emergency Services website last Friday morning. It was from the Bureau of Reclamation and stated that BOR had lost a lawsuit and was immediately releasing a gigantic pulse of water into the Klamath River. What?

The pulse was to be released at noon on Friday, Feb. 10, 2017 with an increase from the 4,000 cfs to 9,600 cfs over a four day period. This would be on top of an already flooding Klamath River that had closed Hwy 96 above Happy Camp. There was over a foot-and-a-half of water over the highway at Granite Point on Friday morning.

Elizabeth immediately contacted our five county supervisors and CAO, who then started burning up the cell phone lines. Ray Haupt, Dist. 5 Supervisor, admitted to me that he was pretty upset. His constituents were in the direct line of this potential disaster. He contacted PacifiCorp to see if they would actually allow the huge water increase on top of a flood stage. He was told it was out of their hands as BOR decrees the flows. Ray’s next phone call was to Erin Ryan, office staff for Congressman Doug LaMalfa. Erin immediately contacted LaMalfa’s Washington D.C. staff, who went to work calling federal officials with the BOR.

Ray told me that Michael Kopseff, Chairman of the Siskiyou Supervisors, first calls were to Assemblyman Brian Dahle and State Senator Ted Gaines offices for help. Terry Barber, Siskiyou Co. CAO, began alerting county departments and started the legal process to shut-down BOR’s pulse flow.

Ray kicked his fire knowledge into gear knowing that fire-type folks are year-round emergency personnel. Tom Mopas, Seiad Valley Fire Chief, provided Ray with on-the-ground info of the raging Klamath River and let him know that high waters were within six-inches of flooding homes on Walker Creek. Ray was able to relay that our congressman and his staff were at a dead run contacting the decision-making BOR officials.

According to the BOR officials in Klamath Falls, the pulse of water had already been released from Upper Klamath Lake. But, Ray believed it could be slowed through the use of the dams between Klamath Falls and Iron Gate dam near Hornbrook. The phone calls continued. Ray talked with his contacts in Cal-Fire. Cal-Trans booted-up even more and CHP officers were part of the emergency alerting process to river residents.

Ray finally received a response from California State Regional BOR Director late in the afternoon. He was told that BOR would not increase the river flow above flood stage with their pulses. Nature also helped out. Rain had stopped, freezing temps slowed the runoff Friday night and sunshine brightened Saturday’s morning. Catastrophic disaster was averted.

Ray said it is “unconscionable” the county was not notified by BOR — through the county CAO’s office. Neither was Humboldt County notified, well other than Ray, who asked the Siskiyou Cal-Fire chief to contact the Humboldt Cal-Fire chief.

Ray has found the lawsuit and read where the judge’s order gave complete discretion of pulse release timing to BOR!

So, who in their right mind would order a doubling of the release of water from the Klamath dams on top of a flood event? Who wouldn’t follow a basic protocol to contact officials in Siskiyou and Humboldt Counties? It is not just unconscionable, it is outrageous!

What is more outrageous is that after writing the above information on Sunday night, I learned of a news article in the Herald and News in Klamath Falls dated Feb. 9, 2017 – one day before Friday. It reported that BOR would be ramping-up the water release on Feb. 10, 2017, because the judge issued the lawsuit order on Feb. 8, 2017. And this was to “take advantage” of the increased flow event of rain-on-snow conditions.

The article also stated: “United States District Judge William H. Orrick ordered Reclamation to implement “winter-spring flushing flows designed to dislodge and flush out polychaete worms that host C. Shasta”. The increased flow event was planned in coordination with the National Marine Fisheries Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Yurok, Karuk, Hoopa Valley and Klamath Tribes, Klamath Project water users, state and other fisheries experts, and PacifiCorp.”

I would think that at least one person in these groups would be smart enough to suggest the pulse could wait a few weeks, so homes and highways would not be flooded and damaged. This lapse of judgment boggles the mind.

The positive note from this situation is the teamwork and instant hustle of our county governing officials, CAO and county staff. It is truly comforting to know this group of people really does have a high-level of concern for the welfare of its citizens. Thank you to Ray and supervisors, county department heads, fire fighters, law enforcement and all emergency services. Thank you!

For those of you who think I am laying it on a little thick – it wasn’t very many years ago that I didn’t believe there was enough concern or teamwork or hustle or connections to federal and state officials to have stopped this catastrophic disaster. (Doug LaMalfa played a major roll with his influence on BOR.) There has been a good change in much of our county’s governing and attitude and I truly appreciate it.

The Scott Valley Protect Our Water meeting was well attended last week. I’ve run out of room to discuss it in this week’s column. Let’s just say the groundwater levels are doing well and the water studies will certainly aid local control of California’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Plan. I will share the good news next week.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan, CA. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 2-7-17

Liz Writes Life

Feb. 7, 2017

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA

Find out what’s going on with California’s Sustainability Groundwater Management Act at the Scott Valley Protect Our Water meeting this Thursday night. Siskiyou County is in a major push to make sure local landowners and the county is in control of the issue and not California bureaucrats. Ray Haupt, Dist. 5 Siskiyou Supervisor, and Preston Harris, who is with the Scott Valley Groundwater Advisory Committee will share information at this meeting.

Erin Ryan, field rep for Congressman Doug LaMalfa, Richard Marshall, president of Siskiyou Water Users and Mark Baird with State of Jefferson updates will also be there. Time is 7 p.m. at the Fort Jones Community Center. Please bring a dessert to share. Yes, this is not the regular meeting date, which was canceled on Jan. 26 due to the California Water Control Board’s meeting held Jan. 26th in Yreka. The following meeting will be March 23rd.

Wow, there is so much going on I hardly know where to start. But here goes!

Doug LaMalfa

This is great news — Congressman LaMalfa was appointed chairman of the House committee on Natural Resources Subcommittee on Indian, Insular and Alaska Native Affairs. This is his first chairmanship and should bode well for the Shasta Tribe here in Siskiyou County.


Finally, the California Cattlemen Assoc. and the California Farm Bureau Federation have brought a lawsuit against the State of California on the ESA-listing of the gray wolf. Pacific Legal Foundation is the lead. The major reason for the lawsuit is the fact that the gray wolf is not native to California. The state regulation for listing species under the California Endangered Species Act states that the animal must be a native to California. These wolves now migrating into California are Canadian gray wolves and are much bigger than the claimed California wolves.

Tea Party

The Yreka Tea Party Patriots have changed their meeting dates to twice a month – the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays. The meetings are held at the Covenant Chapel Church, 200 Greenhorn Rd in Yreka. Starting time is 6:30 p.m.

Supreme Court

Not only did U.S. President Donald Trump nominate a strong conservative, Neil Gorsuch, for the open seat in the U.S. Supreme Court, Trump, his two eldest sons, Vice President Mike Pence with his wife, Karen, Reince Priebus – Trump’s chief of staff – Justice Antonin Scalia’s widow, Maureen, and son, Fr. Paul Scalia, took time to pray publically with Gorsuch and his wife, Marie Louise. This is certainly a “wow” moment that should warm the hearts of Christians – our President Trump openly praying for our country! I hope that we will also continue to ask God’s blessing on our USA and its people.


Several reporters for Redoubt News and Freedom Outpost continue to stay on top of the Bundy situation and I will share their info. The picking of a federal jury was expected to begin yesterday, Feb. 6, 2017, for the trial of seven men including Cliven Bundy and four of his adult sons that include Ryan and Ammon Bundy, who were acquitted in last fall’s Oregon Malheur Refuge trial. All the men were denied bail and have been in jail detention.

Through a local source, I learned that a release hearing was held for Ryan Bundy last week. Ryan defended himself, but is being aided by Dan Bailey who is a para-legal and spoke at a Protect Our Water meeting a year or so ago. The judge allowed Ryan to say a prayer at the beginning of the hearing and read from the U.S. Constitution – both have not been allowed in previous hearings or the Oregon Trial. Federal prosecutors pulled a fast one adding 10 legal actions for Ryan to address, but it looks like Ryan may get out of jail this week. Remember, he still has an unaccounted-for bullet in his arm from the government assault on LaVoy Finicum by Oregon State Police, FBI and Federal Marshals.

There is some more good news. It looks like the BLM’s Special Agent In Charge, Daniel P. Love is under scrutiny for misconduct. A scathing report recently released by the Office Of The Inspector General found Love committed ethical violations during the 2015 Burning Man event held in Black Rock Desert, Nevada. Love was also in charge of BLM’s situation with the Bundy ranch in April of 2014, where there are significant allegations against him.

During his pre-trial release hearing last week, Ryan Bundy explained that at least 200 federal gunmen were involved in the April 12th protest and that he and many of the Bundy supporters could hear the BLM and other agents laughing and choosing the protestors they wanted to kill, including horses and dogs. These federal gunmen were under the command of BLM agent Love.

Something that I didn’t realize is that the Clark County sheriff had negotiated a stand-down where the federal agents were to release Bundy’s cows and abandon the cattle roundup. But, the federal BLM agent gunmen didn’t follow through.

Then you just gotta appreciate former Nevada Assemblywoman Michele Fiore, who participated at the Bundy Ranch April 2014 stand-off. Fiore’s opinion of Agent Love is pretty low, stating: “This guy actually disobeyed the direct order of our State Attorney General and beat people up and arrested them when he had no authority to do so. … I’m telling you all right now, Daniel P. Love disrespected the authority of our Nevada State Attorney General and Local Law Enforcement, and almost caused a terrible tragedy.  There was no damn conspiracy – We all went down into that wash to set cattle free because the Sheriff said the “operation” had ceased and the BLM was leaving – We were almost killed by that raging lunatic;  It’s just that simple.”

I certainly hope Michele gets called to the witness stand!

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 1-31-17

Liz Writes Life

Jan. 31, 2017

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA

The State Water Resources Control Board meeting was well attended. Nearly 200 people showed up at the Miner’s Inn last Thursday night. Thank you to the many local folks who did indeed give comment on the clean water aspect of the Environmental Impact Report needed for the application to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to relicense four hydro-electric Klamath dams from PacifiCorp to the new non-profit Klamath River Renewal Corporation. A super majority of the comments were heartfelt and truthful statements about the devestation that will occur to water quality and the environment from the huge amount of sediment that will pollute and impact the Klamath River if the dams are removed.

Right out the chute, the Shasta Tribe gave the Water Board an ultimatum invoking the state’s statutory obligation to address their concerns regarding any California Environmental Quality Act process – of which the relicensing of the dams will need. The Shasta Tribe was recognized by the Siskiyou Co. Board of Supervisors, last November, as the correct Native American Tribe indigenous to most of the Siskiyou County area including the Klamath River.

Michael Kobseff, chairman of the Siskiyou Co. Supervisors’ Board, read a four-page document citing significant violations by the Water Board, including the fact the state board staff did not contact the county about the new date of this meeting after the first meeting was canceled earlier in January. Oops, I wonder why the state agency would do that?

Also Michael brought up the procedural problems regarding the state using a bogus tax roll that was created for the economic analysis and ultimately claimed the removal of the dams wouldn’t economically affect the county. What a dastardly deed by the state!

Ray Haupt, our Dist. 5 Siskiyou Supervisor, challenged the Water Board staff claiming it is in violation of a Supreme Court Ruling, which identified the Army Corp of Engineers and the EPA as the agency of jurisdiction over the Clean Water Act on navigatable waters that affect two states. Oops, the state may be out of its jurisdiction?

Ray told me he was impressed so many people were well-prepared in their comments citing specific issues. He said it is important to get the specific issues of concern into the “record”; as that will make the agency have to address them in its resulting document. If the issues raised are not fully addressed — that is when a lawsuit is worth the time and effort.


Because it canceled its meeting in January, Scott Valley Protect Our Water will hold its next meeting on Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017 at the Fort Jones Community Center at 7 p.m. Water will be a main discussion item as Supervisor Haupt will be there to explain about the FERC relicensing of the four Klamath hydro-electric dams issue.

Also, Preston Harris will talk about the Scott Valley Groundwater Advisory Committee, levels of groundwater in 2016 and becoming complaint with the California Stainable Groundwater Management Act. Ray will explain the situation at the county level.

Erin Ryan, field rep for Congressman Doug LaMalfa, will also be in attendance. She told me some good news. Our congressman met with Ryan Zinke, a congressman from Montana, who has been tapped by President Donald Trump for Secretary of the Interior. He has yet to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate, but the good news is that Zinke said, “We don’t tear down dams, we build dams.” That is a huge change from the previous destroy-the-environment attitudes of Sally Jewell and many Interior bureaucrats.

Erin will likely have more great info from Congressman LaMalfa, so get your New Year started right by attending the Feb. 9, 2017 meeting.


The meeting with LaVoy Finicum that never happened went off without a hitch in John Day Oregon Saturday night. Shari Dovale reported, on Redoubt News.com, about 900 patriots from throughout the West showed up to the Grant Co. Fairgrounds. LaVoy, a rancher from Nevada, was shot and killed in an ambush roadblock by FBI and Federal Marshals on Jan. 26, 2016, when he was driving to a meeting in Grant Co. Oregon.

During the Jan. 28, 2017 meeting, LaVoy’s wife, Jeanette, attended to discuss the wrongful death civil lawsuit the family is putting forward. Several of LaVoy’s grown children, grandchildren, his parents and siblings were also in attendance.

Kate Dalley, a radio personality, spoke on Truth in Media. This topic was appropriate as the Bundy and LaVoy situations have literally been blackballed from national news. Last January, I heard Lou Dobbs on Fox News strongly question the federal agencies on the LaVoy and Bundy situation. He commented on two days and then the following week there was nothing. I believe Lou was told to hush it up.

I was surprised to learn that Malheur Refuge defendants Jeff Banta, Shawna Cox, Kenneth Medenbach and Neil Wampler were present sharing information and asking for prayers for the next round of defendants preparing for trial in Nevada. I thought they had remained in custody even though they were found non-guilty in the Oregon trial, this past fall, along with Ryan and Ammon Bundy, who continue to be incarcerated — now in Nevada.

 The Keynote speaker was KrisAnn Hall, a Constitutional Attorney and teacher. She spoke here in Siskiyou County several years ago.

One fundraiser held during the evening tugged at my heartstrings. It is to raise money for 7th and 8th grade students from John Day to travel to Washington D.C. and present President Donald Trump with a letter requesting the pardon of Oregon ranchers Dwight and Steven Hammond. I sure hope this occurs. What a great way to bring attention to the travesty dealt the Hammonds, especially when they had already served an outrageous original sentence.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 1-24-17

Liz Writes Life

Jan. 24, 2017

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA


The meeting for the Scott Valley Protect Our Water this Thursday has been canceled. Instead, POW leaders are encouraging supporters to attend the State Water Board meeting on the Environmental Impact Report on the Klamath dams that will be held Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017 at the Miner’s Inn Convention Center. Time is 5 to 7 p.m. The meeting is specifically for public comment on the clean water aspect of relicensing the Klamath hydro-dams, so please attend the meeting and share your comments.


Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017 is also the first anniversary of the death of LaVoy Finicum, when the FBI, U.S. Marshals and other police officers set up a roadblock and put snipers in the trees on the highway in Eastern Oregon, where LaVoy was shot and killed.

LaVoy’s wife, Jeanette Finicum, is holding a meeting in John Day, Oregon called –the meeting with LaVoy Finicum that never happened. Last week, I said I would try to find a phone number to call to buy your $15 ticket, but I haven’t been successful. The only way I can find to purchase tickets is to Google the title of the meeting on the web and it comes up on Oathkeepers.org and you order them through Eventbrite.

Bundy trial

In trying to find info on the upcoming trial of the five Bundy men and 14 supporters, who are sitting in a federal jail facility, I couldn’t find a start date. It had been set for this month, but hasn’t happened. I did learn that the Review Journal newspaper in Las Vegas, just asked a federal appeals court to overturn a federal judge’s ruling that is blocking public access to evidence.

The Review Journal contends it is effectively locked out of reporting on the case. Lawyers for the Review Journal said the public’s right to inspect certain criminal court records is protected by the First Amendment.

The federal government and courts continue to be stinkers as Ammon Bundy’s attorney had a frustrating day in court this month. Marcus Mumford was one of Ammon’s defense lawyers in the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge Oregon trial that prevailed in favor of the Bundys. Ammon, his brother Ryan, and five others were found not guilty by the jury last Oct. 27, 2016.

Mumford demanded the release of Ammon and was then met with physical force by deputy U.S. marshals. He was tackled to the floor by at least six deputies, stunned with a Taser and handcuffed. Three misdemeanor charges have been brought against Mumford. This was an unprecedented move by deputies to restrain and stop a trial lawyer from defending his client.

Mumford’s attorney is vigorously challenging the misdemeanor charges and has filed a motion requesting the personnel files of all the marshals involved in the incident. The next hearing on the case is set for Feb. 15, 2017.

Lead ammo

Just before leaving office, Obama ordered a new ammunition ban for certain federal lands. The ban eliminates the use of lead-based ammo in national parks, wildlife refuges and any other lands managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. I guess this does not include USFS lands.

Gun rights groups are outraged as the ban will have major impacts on hunting. California has also banned lead ammo. I don’t know if it will do any good, but the National Shooting Sports Foundation immediately called for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife’s new director to rescind the order.

I also don’t know what the consequences of being caught with lead ammo will be. Surely, the federal bureaucracy knows that hunters’ closets are full of lead ammo. Hum, I wonder if we can still target practice with it as part of the claimed reasoning behind the lead ban is to protect the environment. Oh, doesn’t lead come from the environment?

Also on the eve of his departure, Obama also had the 3-way light bulb banned by the Energy Dept. Gee whiz!


Up to a few weeks ago, California state agencies were still not willing to admit the drought had ended. In my way of thinking, the bureaucrats did not want to give up any power over water that they had obtained through the drought. Anyway, major newspapers are finally using the word “flooding” in their headlines and most everyone has to admit the drought is over.

Reservoirs are filling up and levees in the Sacramento Delta are stressed. This month can now claim fourth in the highest amount of rainfall in the Sacramento area.

Snowfall has been significant. The Boreal Mountain Ski Resort in the Sierras is reporting nearly 20 feet. Here in Siskiyou Co., I think our Mt. Shasta City residents are feeling pretty trapped by the white stuff. It sounds like there is four feet or more that has fallen in the city.


This winter, we have certainly had our fill of the passing-on of family and neighbors. It is certainly sad to see our loved ones go. I didn’t want to leave anyone out and had not planned on mentioning names, but a prime example is the recent death of George Thackeray. He was a good man, who served Siskiyou County as our Dist. 5 Supervisor in the 1980s and 1990s. His goal was to serve the people. One example that I recall was when the State of California mandated the closing of the garbage dumps and to do environmental analysis on future sites. George was extremely frustrated the state gave a mandate with no funding for the county to do the state’s bidding. It was a change most of us didn’t like – we liked our open dumps. Great treasures were sometimes found there! Now, continued mandates by state agencies are the normal – without funding to do the job! George, and others like him, will be missed.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 10-17-17

Liz Writes Life

Jan. 17, 2016

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA

Yep, the weather was just too darned iffy, so the State Water Resources Control Board postponed the meeting last week. This is the meeting where public comment will be taken on the Clean Water aspect of the Environmental Impact Report regarding relicensing of the hydro-electric Klamath dams from PacifiCorp to the newly-created non-profit Klamath River Renewal Corp. Wow, that is a mouthful.

In last week’s column, I discussed this meeting at length. The new date for this public comment meeting is Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017 at the Miner’s Inn Convention Center. Time is 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.


Scott Valley Protect Our Water had announced its meeting for that date, but President Andrew Hurlimann said it has been changed. The new meeting date will be Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017 at the Fort Jones Community Center. Time is 7 p.m.


Don’t be duped by the Calexit petition that will be out for voters to sign. Calexit wants to secede from the United States and have California become its own country or at least a separate self-governing entity from the U.S. Recently, I learned the official “Yes, California #Calexit” campaign achieved its first financial hurdle of getting the legal petition forms printed – correctly. Literally, thousands of printed petitions will now be circulated and the campaign group is calling for volunteers to gather signatures. Most likely, though, there will be a significant amount of paid signature gathers.

Their goal is to obtain 600,000 registered voter signatures and they have six months to do it. The signature gathering will begin Jan. 25, 2017 and, yes, there will likely be signature gatherers, at some point, in Yreka.

Because I don’t believe California should secede from the USA, I will not be signing it. Please be careful, when it comes to signing petitions. We should truly understand what is being proposed on the petition statement.

If this campaign gathers the needed signatures, then the county clerks and California Secretary of State employees will spend many hours and days verifying that the signatures are indeed registered voters. If the signatures are verified, Yes, California will then be able to place the petition on the ballot in 2018.

In doing research about Calexit and the Yes, California, I have found several very rich Silicon Valley elites are behind it. Even more interesting is that the leader of Yes, California is Louis J. Marinelli, who is a New Yorker that lives in Russia. Yep, Russia — and there is proof that the Russian government is providing assistance to promote his efforts. And on Dec. 18, 2016, Marinelli announced that Yes, California campaign had opened an embassy in Moscow.

So the entire project is very suspect to say the least. My goodness!

The State of Jefferson is not part of this group and the leaders are adamant to explain the Jefferson movement opposes Calexit. Jefferson supporters believe in the U.S. Constitution and want to add a star to the United States flag as a new state.

Unfortunately, in some news articles the State of Jefferson has not been correctly explained and reporters insinuate the Jefferson movement is much like Calexit. That suggestion is blasphemy to Jefferson leaders. And as spokesman Mark Baird has explained, if the Calexit campaign should happen to be successful, many citizens in the Northern California counties will be clamoring and demanding their legislative leaders to use Article 4 Sec. 3 of the U.S. Constitution to break away from California and create a new state – just like West Virginia did during the Civil War.


Several of the Bundy ranchers and their supporters from two different stand-offs with the federal U.S. government, will be going to trial in Nevada soon. I am not sure just when the trial starts, but there are more than two dozen people being held as political prisoners while this travesty plays out.


The first anniversary of the murder of LaVoy Finicum is later this month. I believe it was Jan. 26th. LaVoy’s wife, Jeanette, and their grown children will be holding the meeting that LaVoy was driving to attend, when the feds road-blocked his vehicle and snipers in trees and on the ground shot and killed LaVoy.

The meeting is dubbed: The meeting with LaVoy Finicum that never happened in Oregon.

An Associated Press article, this weekend, admitted that there were at least two shots fired into the vehicle LaVoy was driving and that the FBI shooters did not disclose the correct number of bullets they used. It is one of those bullets that is still lodged in Ryan Bundy’s arm. Oops! The federal agencies still claim – one year later – the situation is still under investigation. Wow, one would think they should have the situation figured out by now. So what are they hiding?

Anyway, Jeanette Finicum told the media this will be a peaceful meeting slated to talk about the U.S. Constitution, property rights and other issues. She believes as her husband did: That the people living in counties and states should be in control of what is deemed “government managed” land not the feds. Remember, under the Constitution the land that was held by the federal government before a territory became a state is to be handed over to the new state for management. That was not done after the Civil War in the Western States.

So literally, what LaVoy and Bundys and now Jeanette were and continue to advocate is that the Constitution be upheld by all levels of government. I agree.

The meeting will be held at the Grant Co. Fairgrounds in John Day, Oregon on Sat. Jan. 28, 2017. Time is 4:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Next week, I hope to let you know who to contact to obtain the $15 tickets. Or give me a call.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan, CA. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 1-10-17

Liz Writes Life

Jan. 10, 2017

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA.

Snow, cold and rain: No one can deny that it is winter in Siskiyou County. Hope everyone has extra food, gallons of water, medicines, wood, other fuel, blankets and emergency items on hand. With another week of storms, I sure do hope the supply trucks for our grocery stores and gas stations are able to travel and arrive safely.

Thank you to the state and county crews that have been working around the clock plowing snow and slush. I think the state crew from our Hwy 3 must have been over helping clear the closed I-5 freeway on Tuesday and Wednesday of last week as a plow didn’t get by our place until late Wednesday afternoon. They worked on and off for several days and nights trying to get caught up. I saw a county plow truck at daylight over on East Callahan Road, for several mornings, so they were able to be out working in their jurisdictions.

After several years of drought and “soft” winters, it is easy to forget that we can get hammered here. It is that darned cold and zero-type temps that add to the mess, when water pipes end up frozen.

Pacific Power, police, firemen and women, other emergency personnel, store managers, employees and neighbors have also been busy providing aid. So a big thank you goes out to all the “good folks” who help people. Most of the time you are quiet heroes, but you are appreciated even if we don’t always know who you are or what you do!

Klamath dams

The Klamath dam scam continues into 2017, but it seems to be easier to read between the lines as long as you can get a hold of the information. Be sure to check sources and facts before believing the loud voices from the Greenie groups and some Tribes. The dams are not coming out – not yet! The many regulatory processes that must occur have not been tackled – not yet!

But, working on the Environmental Impact Report, called EIR, has finally come to the top of the pile. This is where the science and facts should make our points for saving the dams.

Tonight, Jan. 10, 2017, the State Water Resources Control Board is holding one of several meetings regarding the EIR that must be accomplished before the four Klamath hydro-electric dams can be removed. The meeting will be held at the Miner’s Inn Convention Center in Yreka from 5 to 7 p.m.

Specifically, the State Water Board will be taking “public comment” on the Clean Water Certification aspect of the EIR. All comments for this issue must be into the State Water Board by February 1, 2017. If you would like to email or mail-in a comment, contact Siskiyou Co. Natural Resources Specialist Elizabeth Nielsen for the state board’s correct address or email. Her phone is 530-842-8012.

Because of the huge weather system coming in today, you may want to call Elizabeth to see if the meeting is canceled, before you head out to it.

What kicked-off this meeting? The State Water Board and FERC, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, received an application for the hydro-electric power license transfer back in Sept. 2016 by the newly-formed non-profit Klamath River Renewal Corporation called KRRC. The KRRC has replaced the KBRA (Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement) which dissolved the last day of 2015. Since then many of the same players from the KBRA have held secret meetings and in 2016 formed the KRRC. Players in the KRRC include bureaucrats from state and federal agencies, Greenie groups and Tribes.

Most of the secret KRRC – non-announced – meetings held last year were discovered and supervisors from Siskiyou County and Congressman Doug LaMalfa’s office were able to attend along with leaders from Siskiyou Water Users and area agriculture. At several meetings, those not on the “destroy the Klamath dams” bandwagon found they were not welcome, but our fearless leaders stayed anyway.

Guess what? Today’s meeting was announced on Dec. 22, 2016, but somehow Siskiyou County was not notified until just before New Year’s Eve. Yep, for some reason some KRRC players do not want to include Siskiyou Co. even though they did set up a meeting here in Yreka. Yes, many of us have loudly complained when meetings regarding the Klamath dam removal have not been held here.

The next interesting item is that the KRRC application for the hydro-electric license transfer was not correctly and completely filled-out. Oops. So, according to investigations made by Siskiyou County, FERC has not made a decision on the license transfer. Accordingly, FERC will not make a decision on the license transfer to KRRC until at least mid-March. One would think that the application must be correctly completed before a decision could be made. I wonder when KRRC will complete the application? Hum, I also wonder why they didn’t fill it out correctly the first time?

I have been told that the county is compiling its comment regarding the Clean Water Certification of the EIR and that the newly-elected Chairman Michael Kobseff will deliver it at tonight’s meeting as official comment.

It is estimated that millions of cubic yards of sediment has built up behind the Klamath dams. The KBRA nor the KRRC have addressed the water and environmental damage that it will create, when the dams come tumbling down. As far as I know, even the tyrannical Environmental Protection Agency has not addressed the issue. But for a correct EIR to be accomplished the huge sediment issue better meet the stringent EPA regulations.

POW meeting

Scott Valley Protect Our Water will hold its first meeting of the year on Thursday, Jan. 26. Ray Haupt, our Siskiyou Co. Supervisor for Dist. 5, is already on the agenda with several items to discuss and Erin Ryan, field rep for Congressman LaMalfa reported that she will attend.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 1-3-17

Klamath Project - BOR, Klamath River & Dams, Liz Writes Life

Jan. 3, 2017

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA

It has taken 15 years, but a U.S. Court of Federal Claims judge got it right. Judge Marilyn Blank Horn concluded the federal government did indeed take Klamath farmers legal property right – water – in 2001.

Early in 2001, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service rendered a Biological Opinion that the sucker fish in the Upper Klamath Lake would suffer harm, if the Bureau of Reclamation supplied the legal water to the federal Klamath Project farmers. The local sucker fish were and are listed with the Endangered Species Act. (Counter to modern myth — the 1996 federal ESA listing of coho salmon was not part of this Biological Opinion. It was all about sucker fish.)

So, the BOR stopped all irrigation water to Klamath Project farmers in April 2001, which is over 200,000 acres of farm land. The dry A Canal also did not deliver water to many off-project or other property owners. As a result of the Klamath Project farmers losing their water, the lower refuges also went dry affecting and killing 1,000s of birds and wildlife. It was tremendous devastation.

Locals said that suckers thrive better in lower levels of lake water. The feds ignored their voices. We could see that the science of the government bureaucrats was fraudulent.

Guess what, within a few years scientists had to admit sucker fish populations were decreasing and it was because there was too much water in their lakes. Ugh!

It is so frustrating to watch government agencies with their bureaucrat leadership get it wrong and destroy communities of humans and wildlife in their arrogance. But, I have digressed.

So the 1,400 Klamath Project farmers went the entire spring, summer and fall with no irrigation water. There were several suicides by farmers. About 200 farms were lost or sold. Other businesses floundered and 1,000s of employees had to migrate elsewhere.

I asked Ray Haupt, our Dist. 5 Siskiyou Co. Supervisor, about this decision and he was thrilled. “It is the first time I have seen a judge rule in favor of property rights over the ESA regulations,” he said. “The feds tried to argue it was a ‘regulatory takings,’ but this decision shows it is a ‘property takings’ under the 4th Amendment.”

So, this is a win of immense proportion and there will be a trial to decide how much money the farmers will be compensated. Yay!

Ray said the decision is extremely significant, because this decision will set a precedent at the federal appellant court level. Yep, the water to the Klamath Project farmers is a property right and even the ESA cannot take property rights away from citizens.

I consider the takings of the Klamath Project water as a threat from the federal agencies and that they were testing to see how far they could go to put fear into the hearts of the farmers, other property owners and businesses. It is all about control of the people. We must be vigilant to make sure our government agencies serve the people and do not become the tyrant over the people.

On May 7, 2001, more than 18,000 people showed up in Klamath Falls forming a mile-long Bucket Brigade protest through town. I believe California Congressman Wally Herger was the first to fill a bucket from the waters of Lake Elwha. The buckets were then handed from one-individual-to-another up the streets to the bridge over the wide A Canal, where the water buckets were dumped into the empty A Canal. It was illegal for that canal to carry any water. I was there. Many from Siskiyou County went to support the Bucket Brigade. I have photos. No, Federal marshals did not arrest us, but it was a meaningful act of defiance and civil disobedience, which is legal under the U.S. Constitution.

Hooray for the Klamath Bucket Brigade. All who participated were right!

New laws

Believe it or not, 900 new laws have gone into effect Jan. 1, 2017. Last year, the CA. State Legislature sent Gov. Jerry Brown 1,059 pieces of legislation. He signed 898 of those bills, vetoed 159 and two became law without his signature. I have a sneaking hunch that many of us are outlaws and don’t even know it! No, it’s not funny!

A few weeks ago, I discussed the new assault gun and ammunition laws. I will mention a few more new laws that might affect us.


North Carolina waged a war over restrooms and gender identity, but California did not have that fight as the legislature approved AB 1732. It requires all single-toilet bathrooms in businesses and public agencies to be gender neutral. So you can be whatever!

Cell phones

This is a big one and pretty darned specific. While driving a vehicle you are no longer permitted to hold a wireless telephone or electronic wireless communication device. It must be mounted in the 7-inch square in the lower corner of the windshield farthest removed from the driver (so no fair grabbing it and cheating) or in a 5-inch square in the lower corner of the windshield nearest to the driver. Sorry, I don’t get either one of these. Another option is to affix the device to the dashboard in a place that does not obstruct the driver’s clear view and does not interfere with the deployment of an airbag. Guess we better get those Bluetooth devices!

Oh, the law does allow a driver to operate one of these devices with the motion of a single swipe or tap of the finger, but you can’t hold it.


I have just learned there is such a thing as powdered alcohol and it can be reconstituted using water. Wonder what would happen if it was reconstituted with alcohol? It has already been banned in 31 states and it is now illegal to possess, sell or make in California.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 12-27-16

Liz Writes Life

Dec. 27, 2016

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA.

Merry Christmas – two days late! With the light snowfall and cold temps, it certainly felt like an old-fashioned Christmas. Sure makes me appreciate our modern conveniences like a chain saw to cut wood and our pickups to haul it. No horses to harness or wagon to hitch up. I consider running water, especially the heated kind from a hot water tank, to be a necessity. But that wasn’t always the case.

As you can tell, I am counting my blessings for being born in a time filled with mechanical conveniences. I appreciate gas fuel, hydro-dams and anything else that powers our electric grids, vehicles and wondrous machines.

It has been a while since I looked through the book published by the Eschscholtzia Parlor No. 112 of the Native Daughters of the Golden West called “ETNA – from Mule Train to ‘Copter”. Boy, it really makes me appreciate the toughness of our ancestors.

The editors for this book printed, August 1, 1965, were Loreita M. Campbell and Dorice E. Young. Four additional women were thanked for typing the book and I believe the only one who is still with us is Beverly Berryhill, who was also the school secretary when I attended Etna Elementary School in the 1960s.

One of the first photos was courtesy of Bill Smith, who lived on Main Street and was still alive when my parents built a home on Main Street in 1967. The photo showed two furry burrows pulling a giant sled and several smaller ones full of teens and children. Yep, there was sufficient snow for the use of a sled.

On the next page is a photo of Bill and John Ahlgren on skis with a pack team of horses and mules in the snow. For years, they packed the mail from Etna over Salmon Mt. to Sawyers Bar in the early 1900s. I should know the exact time period. I think Bill was probably born in the 1890s. They were older men, when I was a kid.

My Grandpa and Grandma Dillman were living on Etna’s cemetery hill in 1929, when Grandma Rose woke her children up early one snowy morning, so they could watch Bill putting snowshoes on the mules. And they were still a good mile or more before starting up the incline of the mountain. Wow, that must have been a difficult journey! Apparently, that winter boasted a lot of snow in Etna and Scott Valley.

According to the book, when the pack trains were unable to cross the snowy mountains, the men carried mail packs weighing up to 80 pounds on their backs. (You have got to be kidding me!) In 1877, Charles Hooker was a mail carrier who died from exposure and exhaustion, while carrying the mail down the southern side of the mountain.

Then soon after 1900, Ed Harris, John Peters and a man named Jenkins were carrying the mail. Harris didn’t like the threatening looks of the snow on Rocky Point and said they should take a longer safer route. He did, they didn’t and an avalanche took them out. One was later found wrapped around a tree and the other at the bottom of the canyon. Remember, because of many active gold mines there were lots of men working in the Salmon River country and the mail must get through!

A real road was not established over Salmon Mt. until 1891. I wonder just how wide was the road? One photo shows “Dad” Naylor with his Sawyers Bar horse-drawn stage getting ready to leave from Etna. Boy, those narrow-rimmed wooden wheels do not look very sturdy.

One of the big changes in transportation occurred, when the Bennett Company purchased two “Republic” trucks and later five “White” trucks to carry mail, freight and passengers. The Bennett Company had survived the downsizing of mule pack trains over Salmon summit and saw the wave of the future was with freight vehicles.

A photo from 1918 shows four Bennett Stages with drivers, Bill, and his brother, Ralph Smith, George Samon, Clarence Barlet, Carl Lewis and Bill Quigley. The photo is amazingly sharp and revealing. I wouldn’t even consider riding in one of those rickety-looking trucks over Salmon Mt. on today’s paved road!

Whether with a mule train, freight wagon or 1918 vehicles, those men were brave.

The beginning article ends with a discussion on the first helicopter base in Scott Valley in the late 1950s. Robert “Bob” Trimble was a young helicopter pilot, who persuaded Bill Mathews and Erling Hjertager to establish a helicopter business outside of Etna on Mathew’s ranch. Bob patrolled mountains for signs of fire, rescued people who had been injured in the mountains and flew critically ill people to hospitals for medical care. Another wave of the future!

Tragedy struck in 1960 or 1961. Bob Trimble was killed, when his helicopter crashed flying over the Kidder Creek area. Even though I was only five or six, I remember this as his young son, Jerry, was in my Etna Elementary School class. But the business was up and running, so Hjertager’s son, Harold, who was also a pilot, continued on and expanded the business.

I have visited with Harold on and off over the years. He is now retired, but the helicopters and pilots were indispensable during the 1964 huge flood. Harold and the other pilots distributed 1,000s of pounds of food and supplies to hungry, cut-off and isolated folks in the Salmon River area. Bridges and roads were washed out. He told me they flew for several months delivering supplies of food and propane tanks.

This small summation shows the vital role various modes of transportation have played in the Etna and Salmon River country. I believe copies of this book are available at the Etna Library and may be available for purchase at the Siskiyou Co. Museum in Yreka.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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