HISTORICAL OHV RIDE TO THE LION'S HEAD ROCK FORMATION
ELVA JEAN MURRY’S TALK OF THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORP CAMP
ON May 6th, 2017 Gaila and Bob Bell, Trevor Packer, the Rushers, the Garners, Dennis and Margaret Slaugh (all from Rangely) and Duane and Vanessa Hays from Meeker, made a trip to Massadona to hear Elva Jean Murry talk about the old Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) camps, why her family moved to this area and what it must have been like as a young girl to grew up in that time period. There were numerous people that came by vehicle to listen to Elva Jean as well. The CCC Camps were started to help boys with behavior problems to get there education and be productive people.
Ten of us participated in a historical OHV ride from Rangely to Massadona. Our First stop was at the Tank due to several of our participants hadn’t been to the tank and this started the first of many Saturday’s that it will be open.
We even got to hear some music and the acoustics is creates.
We headed up chase and Gaila gave a talk about the oil field and the dangers we face due to the threat of out field being the top second oil producing field. As we proceeded to the top of chase going West Gaila told us about the uses for willow bark as a pain reliever and how beneficial it was to the Indians. There is documentation they used willow bark for making baskets as well.
Bob discussed the removal of the oil and gas and the effect it has had on the underground rock formations and the amount of settling occurred during that time period which was about two inches a year. Rangely field was one of the first fields to pump water back into the ground to replace the oil and gas being taken out of the ground which solved the earth quake problem at the time. There were 120 earthquakes occurring a day. With the shutting in of the wells I have heard the pressure is causing the earthquakes that are occurring at the present time.. Just a rumor but a possibility.
There are numerous canyons along the way and Gaila has spoken to a paleontologist and an archeologist. After seeing some pictures she had of the area they are sure there must be some remnants left by Indians in the area. If they haven't been taken and removed by humans. Gaila has been told that the removal of even one arrow head can be three years in prison which if taken off BLM land is a federal offense. If it is on private and you have permission then it is okay.
We proceeded to the Lion's Head, took some pictures. Gaila has talked with a Ute medicine man that will be giving a presentation in the near future. What an honor. Those of us that went on this ride are looking forward to this future presentation and the knowledge we will be presented with. Along with the Ute medicine man there will be Navajo Indian which should add to the information presented. The Lion's Head was sacred to the Indians and when they did their purification which was don with a sweat log for a period of 2 days they would go to the Lion's Head.
It was a very informative day and a pleasant group of people to spend the day with.
From left to right: Margaret Slaugh, Dennis Slaugh, Lynn Rusher, Wade Rusher, Rich Garner's oldest, Rich Garner, Justin Rusher, Youngest Garner, Trevor Packer, Vanessa Hays, Duane Hays, Bob Bell. Gaila Bell took the picture.
Story by Margaret Slaugh