The ancient, Chumash called this Heart shaped lake, Zaca Lake, or "quiet place." Zaca is one of the very few natural lakes in Southern California. The lake is replenished by underground springs. Geologists speculate that Zaca Lake was formed about 10,000 years ago by a landslide.The Chumash state that there is a rainbow bridge of light and energy arising in Ojai, California that flows into the depths of Zaca Lake. There is even a story that an underground tunnel exists deep within the earth that connects Zaca with Lake Titicaca in Peru.
Today Zaca Lake is run by a non-profit foundation, who's mission statement is to protect and preserve the Lake for the benefit of the public. Zaca Lake is an absolutely incredible little place out in the wild of Santa Barbara County. Technically, the address is on Foxen Canyon Road just before Zaca Mesa Winery, but after you gain access (only if they have given you the gate code) it's another five mile drive down a one lane paved road that crosses through ranch land and steep hills that crosses five creek beds of varying degree of water and difficulty eventually leading you to a beautiful little lake surrounded almost completely by mountains. The setting couldn't be more spectacular.
his partner, Howard Olson, owned, (if such a spiritual place could be owned,) Zaca Lake. Howard Olson, owned one of the largest landscaping companies in Southern California and because of his appreciation for the natural environment, bought Zaca Lake with my father, Bill Williams, in around 1973.
When Gene Dorney and I first announced our engagement, my father sent us to Zaca Lake for the weekend, to seal the deal. When we arrived at the lodge, Howard Olson, delivered a bottle of wine, to our table as a congratulations from my father. He really loved Gene.
Gene and I, fell so in love with Zaca, and it's peaceful, romantic environment, we wanted to live in one of the little cabin's and work there for a year. Gene was even willing to give up his Law Practice, and buy a ranch, in Santa Barbara, where he could grow and sell avocados. That never happened of course, though I wish it had!
My sister, Donna Williams, with her TR-6, at Zaca Lake, still looks like a Movie Star, even in the rustic, wilderness.
My sister Billee, not the camping type in any way, checks herself out in the mirror, to make sure she had "the look," though surrounded by natural beauty. I guess we were so addicted to glamour, high stress and drama, it wasn't easy, melting into such peace and quiet.
the little cabins.
Romance in the wilderness: to be continued tomorrow.