Whitewater Preserve~

Is a 2,851 acre protected nature and wildlife preserve,

located in the southern California desert and extending up into the adjacent San Bernardino and San Jacinto Mountains.

These photos were taken in late October.

Southern California is still in the worst drought in memory,

but the year round Whitewater River is still actively flowing in the desert, aided by earthquake faults trapping water run off from Southern California’s tallest mountain, the 11,500 foot Mt. Gorgonio.

This geological anomaly creates a natural oasis,

that sustains a host of wildlife including bear, bighorn sheep, and mountain lion,

as well as plants, palms and flowers, all in the midst of the baking hot desert.

Cheers to you from Whitewater Preserve~

For more information on the preserve see: https://wildlandsconservancy.org/preserves/whitewater

145 thoughts on “Whitewater Preserve~

  1. That underground river is amazing, especially when it comes to the surface. In Death Valley, the water surfaces at Furnace Creek and is just mind-boggling. Then it vanishes again. It might be part of the aquifer that happens further south whereof you speak. (Write?)

  2. Wow interesting ❗️ Cindy: I √ ed out of the Hotel California 45 yrs ago. Live in the Tennessee Valley Authority now and we always got water 🚿 Thanks for sharing this post 🙂 ~Willy

    • You know lately I have been finding native grinding stones everywhere. I took the twins for a hike and we found six big ones on a large flat rock under the oaks, and Jim and I found more in the preserve. Many of these are thousands of years old. It feels sacred to me when I find them დ

  3. Thanks for your very informative post. I didn’t know about the beautiful oasis or that California is still experiencing drought conditions. It was very bad here (in the Okanagan) during the summer with extreme temperatures and major fires, but there has been plenty of rain for a couple of months now.

  4. What a fascinating and beautiful place. It is so restorative to view through your photos. I can only imagine how wonderful it must be to spend time there in person. Thanks so much Cindy for this breath of nature to start my day! 💚

  5. Cindy, your photos and words could easily be from a travel brochure. Even in the desert, there are autumn colors to behold. I imagine that water is ice cold! Beautiful blog. Enjoy the weekend and be well. oxox

  6. What a beautiful preserve and oasis Cindy. There is a stark beauty in the desert, but I often feel uncomfortable. Maybe sensing the fragility and danger of living in the desert. I hope the region gets some rain and relief. 🙏

    • Awww….. Makes me happy. Deserts have unending mysteries to reveal. I just learned about this preserve too and I have been visiting the desert multiple times a year, all my life დ

  7. Amazing to see a relatively healthy flow during the severe drought. Here in Western Mass. our brooks and streams often have little flow during a drought. Good luck with some rain coming your way.

    • The water is trapped by earthquake faults. There is so little written about it, but apparently there is a subterranean lake. Whatever the explanation, it is an incredible oasis in the midst of desert and drought დ

  8. I am so happy that there is a preserve!
    Imagine if there was not?
    There are many who wish there was not. They do not care if it was no more, as long as they made their $$$$

  9. Not sure a desert would be a particularly kind place for humans to live, but it certainly has a natural beauty, doesn’t it? And Cindy, you’ve captured its essence well, from the flowing river to all those majestic mountains!

  10. Your world is so far from mine and with each photograph, you make me realize how huge and beautiful and diverse this planet is. Thank you for sharing your piece of Earth, Cindy. xo

  11. It doesn’t look like classic desert for me, which is sandy, dry and hot. This one have beautiful landscape with the mountains, plants, animals, and even river full of water. There is no people around as I guess. Probably it lucky do not have them, otherwise it did not look so nice.

  12. Since we’ve not been able to travel out west for a while, your gorgeous blog post is a balm for my heart that misses that landscape ❤️ (But annoyingly, your posts STILL are not showing up in my email…what gives, WordPress???)

    • Not being able to travel as freely as before is definitely burdensome. So I am happy the images gave you pleasure. And yes, WP seems to like unfollowing my followers because they do it so constantly! დ

  13. We are visiting family who live in Las Vegas. Another place, at least originally, that sustained life from aquifers which produced springs from the surrounding mountains. Of course, the building around here is bizarre to see from the plane with the desert landscape suddenly turning into warehouses, housing developments, and resorts. – Oscar

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