978-0-87417-704-6 / 9780874177046

The Sespe Wild: Southern California'S Last Free River (Environmental Arts and Humanities Series)


Publisher:University of Nevada Press



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About the book:

Fifty miles northwest of Los Angeles, Sespe Creek flows through some of the wildest territory in California. To nature writer and outdoorsman Bradley John Monsma, it is the place "that teaches me to be fully alive," a place that reminds us of what we've lost and inspires us to love what's left. "The Sespe Wild" chronicles Monsma's exploration of this fantastic region. His attention ranges from the physical Sespe to its subsurface geology, and he discusses both the Chumash people who first occupied it and the impact of Spanish and American settlers. He also considers the Sespe through the eyes of some of its nonhuman populations - the nearly extinct condors, the vanished grizzlies, the mountain sheep, steelhead trout, and red-legged frogs. He ponders the tension between preservation and management of wilderness and the critical issues that arise wherever wilderness and cities meet. Monsma's informative, nuanced, and witty meditation on one of California's last best places brilliantly combines history with attentive observations on the natural world, the symbolic and spiritual levels of human experience with the land, and the power of the land's ongoing creation and renewal.

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