Monday, 30 November 2020

A brief history of Victoria Creek

Many of us were greatly surprised by the recent posting of signs in the creek between 8th and 9th avenues in Lucerne declaring it Victoria Creek Park. The burning question on everyone’s mind is, “Who the heck is Victoria and why did they name the creek after her?”


Local lore has it that she is a relative of Judge Ralph V. DeVoto who served as the Superior Court Judge for the County of Lake from 1969 to 1983. When Judge DeVoto put in his subdivision here in Lucerne he needed to tweak the flow of the more southern branch of the creeks that join together on the mountain side of Country Club Drive. This branch was channelized to accommodate the housing along Victoria Drive, and some took to calling that portion Victoria Creek.


The county has been responsible for the maintenance of this portion of the creek since the judge's subdivision was created and had cared for it for many years until the mid- to late 1990s when, for some reason, they believed they no longer had that responsibility. Our supervisor at the time tried to convince us we needed to go through the Local Area Formation Commission (LAFCO) process to form a district to tax ourselves to do something the county taken responsibility for. We may well be crazy, but not stupid.

Lo and behold, when that section flooded on New Year's 2006 the county still claimed no responsibility until the document was found that showed, yes indeed, it was their responsibility. It will once again be cared for in a proactive way. The aggregate removed from the stream bed can be sold or used by the county thus a win/win situation.

There have been maps around that show the name of the creek as Morshed Creek, but only a certain section of it. Fish and Game maps show it as a blue line stream. Hitch used to come up it to spawn but because of sedimentation and lack of care they can no longer access it. The hope is to get the hitch back up the creek.

An additional hope is that an appropriate name can be agreed upon for the name of the creek. Most folks have asked, “What’s wrong with Lucerne Creek?” Not a thing my dear, not a thing.

Luckily Kim Clymire from our Parks Department will be meeting with the citizens of Lucerne to discuss the park in the next few months. The creek naming will be part of the discussion along with park hours and the subject of leaving the creek in as natural a state as possible while providing the kids in this town who are beyond swing set age a place to be kids.

Ongoing TLC will also be mandatory to getting our hitch run back, and to keeping the park natural, and caring for our heritage oaks and laurels.

This park and creek, whatever we decide to call it, will be for the folks of Lucerne and with ownership comes responsibility. Lucerne – are we up to it? 


Donna Christopher is a longtime Lucerne resident. {mos_sb_discuss:11}

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