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Cal Poly Pomona

Pond of Tranquility

Most people think of southern California as a very dry place, and wouldn’t be surprised to hear it called a “desert”. Although there are true deserts on the inland sides of the mountain ranges, the coastal sides once supported massive wetlands and even lakes, fed by a high water table and the seasonal and permanent rivers and streams.

Most of that water is still here, but it now serves the needs of millions of people, “manufactured landscapes”, and the remnants of agriculture. Once, the Los Angeles, San Gabriel, and Santa Ana rivers flowed freely to the ocean, but now the largest single freshwater outfall is the Hyperion Sewage Treatment Plant.

The Pond of Tranquility represents a small part of those aquatic environments. Its plants and animals are still found in the remnant wetlands. We can look across its still surface and remember California as it was.

 

Looking across the pond toward the entrance of the stream

 

Next stop: Desert Garden