Monday, August 04, 2008

Barker Ranch - Where Charles Manson was Captured

One of the places we visited during our trip up Goler Wash was the Barker Ranch, made famous as the place where Charles Manson was captured on October 12, 1969.

I actually missed the turnoff to the ranch as I was driving up the wash. The road turned under some overgrown trees, which was a pleasant change from the rest of the canyon. The ranch then appeared on the left. The place was ringed by a barbed wire fence and the yard even had a few healthy trees.

The various trees and plants are meant to be watered by an irrigation system made from PVC pipes that are fed from the concrete lined cistern. that system is long past its useful days. the plants that still live have probably sent their roots deep enough to draw from the spring water.

I've read that Manson was found hiding in the bathroom cabinet. That cabinet appears to have been removed. It's probably now in someone's personal museum.

There was a log book in the kitchen, along with various items left by visitors. Out front was a small park service bathroom sign post with an arrow directing people off to the left where another such sign post pointed them to a gate in the fence. Outside that was the lovely latrine. Not exactly up to the traditional park standards, but functional. There was even toilet paper in a small wooden cubby on the side.

Overall, it was lonely, hot, and desolate place. I can't imagine living there.

On a side note, the authorities dug up the area this past May in the hopes of possibly locating remains of several bodies that were reported to have been buried there (even by Manson family members who were there). Nothing conclusive was reported to have been found. Here's a CNN report and Anderson Cooper blog about that. If you Google, you'll easily find even more news stories about it.

For more information about the Manson family activity at the Barker Ranch, you might read this page. I have no idea if any of that is true.

1 comment:

Bbk said...

Awesome NASA logo on the Fridge.