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Zanja Hike: Walk the Path of Early Santa Cruz’s Water History!

August 6, 2016 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm


Imagine our city’s landscape as it appeared 200 years ago.  Trace the course of the old water canal (“zanja”) that was dug to Mission Santa Cruz by Ohlone indigenous people in the late 18th century. After the mission’s secularization, the “zanja” continued to be used until up till around the 1870s.   

Join educator and local history author Dean Silvers on this 2-hour, 2.5-mile gradual downhill trek from Spring Street to the Santa Cruz Mission with views, maps, photos and discussion as we piece together the route of this historic waterway. A map will be provided to each participant.

RSVPs are encouraged. Email to reserve your spot. Meet at the Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park at 9:30 a.m. to carpool. Park downtown and walk to the Mission via the North Pacific stairs or Mission Street to School Street. Limited parking is available at the end of Spring Street, where the hike will begin at 10 a.m. Bring a bag lunch, water, hat and sunglasses, and layers of clothing. 

Dean Silvers has lived in the San Francisco and Monterey Bay areas all of his life. He graduated from UC Santa Cruz in 1974 and helped established bilingual education programs in each of the school districts in which he taught primary grades for 34 years. He wrote and filmed a 14-hour video history of Santa Cruz County that was intended for younger students. Later, he translated his  video script into Spanish to make a 400-page student history book, which had 200 pages of maps, illustrations and photos. He has written several articles on Santa Cruz County history, especially focusing on the history of the Mission Santa Cruz water supply and local creeks. Two self-published books were the result of that research. In addition, he has researched and written the history of all sides of his family.


(831) 423-4609

Parks and Beaches

Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park
144 School St.
Santa Cruz, CA 95060 United States
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