Amoeblog

West of the Westside - a Santa Monica Mountains primer

Posted by Eric Brightwell, June 1, 2011 04:00pm | Post a Comment

THE SANTA MONICA MOUNTAINS

Santa Monica Mountains

The Santa Monica Mountains are a traverse mountain range that stretches from the Pacific Ocean 64 kilometers east to the flood plain where the LA River is fed by the Verdugo Wash. The southern side of the eastern end of the range is almost always referred to as the Hollywood Hills. The central portion lies within LA's westside and the foothills are home to some of LA's most affluent neighborhoods (e.g. Bel Air, Beverly Hills and Pacific Palisades). To the north, separated by the mountains, is the San Fernando Valley. Technically, the Channel Islands are also part of the range, although they're separated from the mainland by water.

Santa Monica Mountains
Pendersleigh & Sons' Official Map of the Santa Monica Mountains

The western portion of the Santa Monica Mountains separates the Conejo Valley from Malibu and the neighboring communities that make up the Los Angeles district known as the Santa Monica Mountains area. The district borders Ventura County to the west and north, the San Fernando Valley to the northeast and the Westside to the east. 

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Where the Deer and the Antelope Play - An Antelope Valley Primer

Posted by Eric Brightwell, May 25, 2011 02:00pm | Post a Comment
THE ANTELOPE VALLEY

Antelope Valley California

The Antelope Valley
is a large region located in the western edge of the Mojave Desert situated between the Tehachapi and the San Gabriel Mountains. It is neighbored by the regions of Kern County/The Central Valley to the north, Northwest Los Angeles County to the west, Angeles Forest to the south and San Bernadino County/The Inland Empire to the east. Historically it was home to the Kawaiisu, Kitanemuk, Serrano and Tataviam people. Spaniards invaded in the 1770s and conquered the land.

Map of Antelope Valley, California
Pendersleigh & Sons' Official Map of the Antelope Valley

Antelope Valley's name comes from the pronghorns which populated the area until the 1880s. Though more closely related to giraffes and okapi, the are wrongly but commonly referred to as "pronghorn antelopes."

Pronghorn herd

Today, the main industries of the valley's communities are aerospace, agriculture, manufacturing and mining. A population boom began in the 1980s and, in the the last ten years, the principle cities in the area, Lancaster and Palmdale, have passed Pomona to become the fifth and sixth largest cities in Los Angeles County. The population is approximately 50% white, 30% Latino, 13% black and 4% Asian.

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Betwixt the Blossom and the Bough - A Pomona Valley Primer

Posted by Eric Brightwell, May 17, 2011 04:35pm | Post a Comment
AN  INTRODUCTION TO THE POMONA VALLEY

Pomona Valley Panorama
 
The Pomona Valley is located on the far eastern edge of Los Angeles County -- actually straddling it and San Bernadino County. The towns of Montclair, Ontario, San Antonio Heights and Upland are all located across the San Antonio River, on the San Bernadino side, in the Inland Empire.

Pomona Valley postcard

Since I've yet to expand beyond writing about towns and neighborhoods of LA County (and Orange County, which was formerly part of LA County) to San Bernadino and Riverside Counties, this Pomona Valley primer is focusing only on the Pomona Valley communities within Los Angeles County: Claremont, Pomona and La Verne. (San Dimas and Diamond Bar, which straddle the border of the Pomona and San Gabriel Valleys, I've chosen to include in the San Gabriel Valley.)

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Gabriel's Horn Does Sound - A San Gabriel Valley Primer

Posted by Eric Brightwell, April 24, 2011 06:33pm | Post a Comment
THE SAN GABRIEL VALLEY
San Gabriel Valley postcard

Invariably when one speaks or hears of "The Valley," the valley in question is the San Fernando (despite the fact that there are at least six major and loads of minor valleys in Los Angeles County). For the same reasons that I'm mildly annoyed when people refer to "THE City" or "THE Bay," the notion of "THE Valley" smacks of ignorance at best and unpleasant small-mindedness at worst. This blog entry is an introduction to the San Gabriel Valley, that great and amazing expanse of suburbs, boomburbs, exurbs and enthoburbs (any "suburb" portmanteaus I've missed?) with surprisingly significant history and variety of cultures beneath the seemingly uniform surface of bandage-colored strip malls and homes. That being said, at the time of writing, the San Fernando Valley page on Facebook has 25,519 fans whereas the San Gabriel Valley page has a mere ten.

Map of the San Gabriel Valley
Pendersleigh & Sons' Official Map of the San Gabriel Valley


GEOGRAPHY

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The Green Glen of Glenties - A Verdugos Primer

Posted by Eric Brightwell, April 14, 2011 06:23pm | Post a Comment
THE VERDUGOS

 

The Crescenta Valley and Verdugos communities


The Verdugos region of LA County lies between the San Gabriel Mountains, the Verdugo Mountains (or Verdugo Hills) and the San Rafael Hills. The residents mostly live in the Crescenta Valley and the less-developed ranges that surround it. It includes the communities of (parts of) Glendale, La Cañada-Flintridge, La Crescenta-Montrose, La Tuna Canyon, (parts of) Pasadena, Sunland and Tujunga. It's surrounded by the San Fernando Valley to the west, the San Gabriel Valley to the east, Northeast LA to the south, the Mideast Side to the southwest and the Angeles Forest to the north. The inhabitants of the region are approximately 50% white, 23% Latino, 13% Asian and 8% black.

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