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Barker Dam Area Vandalism
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By Adam Stackhouse
Administrator
Feb 23, 2013
Courtright Reservoir, September 2013

www.nps.gov/jotr/parknews/dam_vandalism.htm


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By mark felber
From Wheat Ridge, CO
Feb 23, 2013

This is really sad.


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By C Miller
Administrator
Mar 3, 2013
High Desert Sunrise, Joshua Tree NP

It's amazing how much graffiti there really is now.

Graffiti at Barker Dam, Joshua Tree NP
Graffiti at Barker Dam, Joshua Tree NP


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By Jeremy Monahan
From Fort Fun, CO
Mar 3, 2013
View of Longs Peak from Mt. Alice, RMNP

I'm a bit confused, did most of those names appear recently due to the low water? I see at least one name dated in 2013, and they all look to be about the same age. If all of those are less than a few years old, that is some serious graffiti.


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By Murdo
Mar 3, 2013

Why is this graffiti important, and why is this dam historically significant (wiki/net doesn't have much to say)? Looks like a crude concrete dam with little aesthetic value apart from the water behind it. Not that this vandalism is pretty either but it seems like a non-issue and waste of park resources. This isn't a petroglyph being defaced. Sure I'm going to get flamed for this, so tell me why i'm wrong.


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By mark felber
From Wheat Ridge, CO
Mar 3, 2013

In a world wide (or even state wide) context you would be right, this is just about nothing. For those of us who have climbed and/or hiked in this area, though, this is depressing. Barker Dam does help give a picture of how people lived in this area in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and how they tried to adapt to a changing climate over the years. Seeing it vandalized this way isn't on quite the same scale as tagging the Washington Monument, but nobody who has climbed or hiked around here wants future visitors to have to look at that garbage.

In a greater sense, some of us still see national parks and national monuments as places where we can get away from graffiti and some of the other negative aspects of urban life. Finding out that we're wrong doesn't make us happy. I for one would love to see the culprits caught and put to work cleaning up their mess.


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By C Miller
Administrator
Mar 3, 2013
High Desert Sunrise, Joshua Tree NP

The Big Horn (aka Barker) Dam, constructed by C.O. Barker and others in 1900 and raised to it's current height by William Keys and others in 1949/50, is an example of the enterprising spirit and ingenuity of the people who lived in the area at the time; while not as old as the nearby Native art it too should enjoy the same level of respect and protection.

The grafitti is located in an area that normally would be many feet underwater but for now is bone dry. Not sure for now why the water is absent but perhaps the Park Service has drained it to retrofit the dam or simply plans to keep it empty for lack of funds to do the work needed to make it safe.

Every year hundred of thousands of people visit Joshua Tree National Park and while most are content to experience the natural beauty, historical sites and perhaps even recreate, all of which may leave an indelible mark on their person, others clearly visit to leave their own mark on the Park.


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