|The steps down into what we think is a recreation of a sweat lodge were steep enough that I needed to give myself a boost by partly pulling myself.|
|In May of 2015, all I could do was look on from the outside.|
The Chumash Indian Museum manages the park, and they also built a recreated Chumash village,
Even though I was already tired, I found I could travel much farther with less energy with the hiking sticks. Thereafter, I began using the hiking sticks exclusively.
Even so, I was so tired that I lunged for the first
|My welcome rest in 2015.|
But we knew she would love the park's magnificent oaks, and we were right.
As usual, after the portion of our walk with Joella and a nice picnic, we headed off to a more vigorous hike. There we hiked in an oak forest that looked like it had barely been altered since the Chumash roamed it. Well, besides the road, of course.
You could almost imagine the Chumash gathering the acorns and grinding them into a mash that they would leach of its tannins and turn into a flour.
In fact, don't those flat rocks look like grinding rocks? No, it's probably our imagination running away with us. Perhaps they were caused by erosion instead.
But I couldn't get the rock out of my mind. When we returned to Joella, I slipped into the Chumash Indian Museum to ask an employee about the rocks.
Yes, she told me. Those holes were made by the Chumash.
All told, we hiked 2.74 miles though the former home of the Chumash, who gathering acorns blissfully unaware that they would be one day shunted off their land into reservations.
The Chumash now own a casino, while a small museum pays tribute to their nearly forgotten culture.
On that sad note, here's a bonus pic of a huge, burned-out tree smack dab in the middle of the parking lot. It's hollowed out, yet it still survives, much like the Chumash.