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Borrego Springs– no there there

Desperate hike, crazy to live there, Montesoro, water trouble, goodbye to farms

Borrego Springs, oasis-small, sits in an open valley like a tiny jewel in an elegant setting.
Borrego Springs, oasis-small, sits in an open valley like a tiny jewel in an elegant setting.
  • From Toro Peak to Fonts Point, barely

  • Their plan was to start at Toro Peak, in the Santa Rosa Mountains just north of Borrego Springs, hike along the mountainous spine over Rabbit Peak and Villager Peak, then down through Rattlesnake Canyon to Fonts Point at the intersection of Highway S-22, a distance of about 30 miles. Four friends, two of them brothers, were taking enough food and water on their backs for a three-day hike.
  • By Desiree Webber, July 23, 1981
"I told him they hadn’t had water since this morning. I think I worried him that they were dying.”
  • The four corners of San Diego County

  • And suddenly the house appears – down this track off of Peg Leg Road, the adobe homestead with the tin roof, the chimney, sheltered from sun and wind by the feathery, dusty-green Persian tamarisk trees, nestled ‘neath trestled water tank and tall windmill, guarded by spindly ocotillos, cacti, and those ancient creosote plants, bathed in pink paint.
  • By Bill Manson, March 16, 1995
Northeast corner: Matt and Pat Burke, Anza-Borrego. “That’s where Harry Oliver had the paddy fields dug. He was the associate art director for the 1936 film The Good Earth."
  • Ten Reasons Why You’d Have to Be Crazy to Live in Borrego Springs

  • To paraphrase what Gertrude Stein once said of Oakland, there is no there there — no people (population: about 3000), no movie theater, no stoplight, no convenience store, no hospital, no home mail delivery, no McDonald’s. And not only are these things not there, but it’s a 50-mile ride over rough roads (to Brawley or Ramona) before you can get to them. This distance can prove daunting if you, for example, run out of cigarettes late at night.
  • By Larry McCaffery, Dec. 24, 2003
Borrego Springs
  • Borrego Springs, 92004

  • Sure it was 117 degrees a few days ago and we have to drive more than an hour to buy organic vegetables or underwear. We don’t have a movie theater or a Thai restaurant and the summer population is less than the number of students in most high schools, but there is something about Borrego Springs.
  • By Leslie Bellah, Oct. 4, 2007
  • Borrego Springs – a town left dry

  • Early this year, two Borrego landmarks closed down for lack of capital and, many say, lack of business acumen. The Borrego Ranch Resort & Spa and its adjoining Montesoro Golf & Social Club basically closed up shop in the height of the tourist season, after warning for several months that the end was near if more investors wouldn’t step forward. Montesoro had been through bankruptcy twice under different ownership and the name Rams Hill. The ranch had been owned by Copley Press under the name Casa del Zorro.
  • By Don Bauder, Feb. 10, 2010
  • Less Water Flows In, More Money Flows Out

  • Dennis Dickinson takes his dogs for a hike off Borrego Valley Road in Borrego Springs at 6:30 in the morning to avoid the heat. From the trail, Dickinson looks west toward San Ysidro Mountain. In the foreground, on most mornings, he sees sprinklers spraying water on the fairways and greens of the Borrego Springs Resort, one of five golf-course resorts in the tiny desert oasis.
  • By Dorian Hargrove, Sept. 8, 2010
  • Flipsville Seeks a Savior

  • For decades, financial carpetbaggers have pulled the wool over the eyes of the citizens of Borrego Springs, the unincorporated desert town of 2600 full-time residents in northeast San Diego County. Now Borregans hope that a financier closer to home, Encinitas’s Russell Geyser of Geyser Holdings, will clean up the scummy residue, including delinquent taxes, back homeowner association fees, and defaulted water bonds at the town’s gated housing development, Montesoro Golf & Social Club.
  • By Don Bauder, June 29, 2011
Montesoro, Borrego's upscale golf and homes venture, has not broken par
  • Build a home, lose a farm

  • Tiny, water-deficient Borrego Springs (population 3500) may be a microcosm of what San Diego will be if the water crisis worsens. Borrego is betting the farm — actually, betting on leveling farms — for its survival. San Diego County may not have enough farms to adopt Borrego’s strategy, but it certainly could learn something from the little town in the northeast part of the county.
  • By Don Bauder, Oct. 22, 2014
Dry “lake” next to the 18th hole
  • Hell with the fire gone out

  • Around the town’s traffic circle, Christmas Circle, several produce stands were selling dates — the stands are seasonal — and the famous “Borrego pinks” ($2.50 for a bag of about 20), delicious grapefruit grown to perfection in this area.
  • By Alexander Theroux, Feb. 13, 1997
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Borrego Springs, oasis-small, sits in an open valley like a tiny jewel in an elegant setting.
Borrego Springs, oasis-small, sits in an open valley like a tiny jewel in an elegant setting.
  • From Toro Peak to Fonts Point, barely

  • Their plan was to start at Toro Peak, in the Santa Rosa Mountains just north of Borrego Springs, hike along the mountainous spine over Rabbit Peak and Villager Peak, then down through Rattlesnake Canyon to Fonts Point at the intersection of Highway S-22, a distance of about 30 miles. Four friends, two of them brothers, were taking enough food and water on their backs for a three-day hike.
  • By Desiree Webber, July 23, 1981
"I told him they hadn’t had water since this morning. I think I worried him that they were dying.”
  • The four corners of San Diego County

  • And suddenly the house appears – down this track off of Peg Leg Road, the adobe homestead with the tin roof, the chimney, sheltered from sun and wind by the feathery, dusty-green Persian tamarisk trees, nestled ‘neath trestled water tank and tall windmill, guarded by spindly ocotillos, cacti, and those ancient creosote plants, bathed in pink paint.
  • By Bill Manson, March 16, 1995
Northeast corner: Matt and Pat Burke, Anza-Borrego. “That’s where Harry Oliver had the paddy fields dug. He was the associate art director for the 1936 film The Good Earth."
  • Ten Reasons Why You’d Have to Be Crazy to Live in Borrego Springs

  • To paraphrase what Gertrude Stein once said of Oakland, there is no there there — no people (population: about 3000), no movie theater, no stoplight, no convenience store, no hospital, no home mail delivery, no McDonald’s. And not only are these things not there, but it’s a 50-mile ride over rough roads (to Brawley or Ramona) before you can get to them. This distance can prove daunting if you, for example, run out of cigarettes late at night.
  • By Larry McCaffery, Dec. 24, 2003
Borrego Springs
  • Borrego Springs, 92004

  • Sure it was 117 degrees a few days ago and we have to drive more than an hour to buy organic vegetables or underwear. We don’t have a movie theater or a Thai restaurant and the summer population is less than the number of students in most high schools, but there is something about Borrego Springs.
  • By Leslie Bellah, Oct. 4, 2007
  • Borrego Springs – a town left dry

  • Early this year, two Borrego landmarks closed down for lack of capital and, many say, lack of business acumen. The Borrego Ranch Resort & Spa and its adjoining Montesoro Golf & Social Club basically closed up shop in the height of the tourist season, after warning for several months that the end was near if more investors wouldn’t step forward. Montesoro had been through bankruptcy twice under different ownership and the name Rams Hill. The ranch had been owned by Copley Press under the name Casa del Zorro.
  • By Don Bauder, Feb. 10, 2010
  • Less Water Flows In, More Money Flows Out

  • Dennis Dickinson takes his dogs for a hike off Borrego Valley Road in Borrego Springs at 6:30 in the morning to avoid the heat. From the trail, Dickinson looks west toward San Ysidro Mountain. In the foreground, on most mornings, he sees sprinklers spraying water on the fairways and greens of the Borrego Springs Resort, one of five golf-course resorts in the tiny desert oasis.
  • By Dorian Hargrove, Sept. 8, 2010
  • Flipsville Seeks a Savior

  • For decades, financial carpetbaggers have pulled the wool over the eyes of the citizens of Borrego Springs, the unincorporated desert town of 2600 full-time residents in northeast San Diego County. Now Borregans hope that a financier closer to home, Encinitas’s Russell Geyser of Geyser Holdings, will clean up the scummy residue, including delinquent taxes, back homeowner association fees, and defaulted water bonds at the town’s gated housing development, Montesoro Golf & Social Club.
  • By Don Bauder, June 29, 2011
Montesoro, Borrego's upscale golf and homes venture, has not broken par
  • Build a home, lose a farm

  • Tiny, water-deficient Borrego Springs (population 3500) may be a microcosm of what San Diego will be if the water crisis worsens. Borrego is betting the farm — actually, betting on leveling farms — for its survival. San Diego County may not have enough farms to adopt Borrego’s strategy, but it certainly could learn something from the little town in the northeast part of the county.
  • By Don Bauder, Oct. 22, 2014
Dry “lake” next to the 18th hole
  • Hell with the fire gone out

  • Around the town’s traffic circle, Christmas Circle, several produce stands were selling dates — the stands are seasonal — and the famous “Borrego pinks” ($2.50 for a bag of about 20), delicious grapefruit grown to perfection in this area.
  • By Alexander Theroux, Feb. 13, 1997
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