Cottonwood Canyon, Santa Catalina Island

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Cottonwood Canyon, Santa Catalina Island


COTTONWOOD CANYON: “In the upper reaches of this canyon vegetation is confined to the floor which is broad and interspersed with groves and grass covered meadows. The ground descends gradually for a mile or more and is entirely dry. Beyond the meadows, however, the canyon suddenly narrows and between this point and the Coach Road gathers water sufficient to form a stream, which, with the possible exception of Middle Ranch Creek, is the finest on the island. The lower part of the canyon is an excellent collecting field. On the left side of the creek, at its mouth, the Cholla cactus has the appearance of having been introduced. It can be traced from the very edge of the beach diagonally up the mountainside to the Coach Road. The road ascending the ridge on the western side reaches the summit near the oceanfront on a rolling plateau, once the site of an Indian village. Here the best view obtains of the Little Harbor region. Descending the western side the road crosses the creek, dry at this point, and ascends the central ridge on which the Road House is located.” [Millspaugh & Nuttall Flora of Santa Catalina Island (1923)].


» Bickford, Virginia & Patricia Martz Test Excavations at Cottonwood Creek in Pacific Coast Archaeological Society Quarterly 16(1 & 2):106-124, January & April, 1980



In the News~

July 18, 1935 [TI/Avalon]: “Points of interest—Campo Blanco—One thousand acres picturesquely situated at the north end of Cottonwood Canyon, four miles from Little Harbor. The summer home of Mr. and Mrs. P. K. Wrigley. Buildings are of stucco finish, equipped with electricity and other modern conveniences. On this rancho Mr. Wrigley maintains a stable of valuable Arabian horses. Large numbers of wild birds, in migration, frequently stop at Campo Blanco for food and water. The canyon toward Cottonwood Dam, three miles in length, is prohibited to hunters and it is to be used as a bird sanctuary in which quail, pheasants and doves find refuge in the toyon trees and the underbrush. Goats, deer and buffalo often visit the canyon.”