A Spanish word meaning corner. The inside corner, not the outside corner. In Spanish there is a different word for that.

 The inside corner is a protected place. In Santa Cruz County, California, there is a place called Rincon. It is the inside corner of a steep and curvy highway. It was the name of a huge Mexican land grant, a parcel that included the canyon, from the steep curvy road to the San Lorenzo River at its base. It has been reclaimed by the forest, but it used to be a logging camp.

 Highway 9 curves northward out of Santa Cruz, heading up into the mountains, toward Felton and Ben Lomond. Now it is surrounded by the Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park. Hikers, not loggers. But people do not stop at the corner, the rincon, they drive by, on the way to their hike. On the edge of the road in the big curve, the big rincon, a couple of miles out of the city limits, there still sits an old moss-covered water trough.

Trough at Logging Camp

Across the road is a very small flat area. This is Rincon. The Corner. It is the place that my grandfather and his sisters were born.

Site of old Logging Camp

Nonno came to this place about 1890. He brought my great-grandmother to this place. They lived and worked at the logging camp. There in the forest in this small flat corner of land they made their home. Three of their children were born here. And they lived here until about 1896. Then they left the woods.

 If you stop today you will be surrounded by a wall of green overlooking a cliff of green. When you step off the road onto the small flat area, you are surrounded by redwoods. The tallest trees in the world.

Old Logging Camp at Rincon, Santa Cruz, CA

Old Logging Camp at Rincon, Santa Cruz, CA


One thought on “Rincon

  1. I always learn a little secret from your blogs – like Rincon being “the inside corner.” Just this adds a new an interesting way for me to express myself. Thank you. Keep writing!

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