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Why El Morro works

October 18, 2002

John Sacher

Eight great reasons why El Morro should stay as it is:

1) El Morro is already open to the public

2) El Morro makes money for the state.

3) State campgrounds lose money. (As I am writing this from El

Morro, I am looking at the public parking lot. It is empty.)

4) El Morro provides much-needed affordable housing for

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lower-income residents.

5) If there were a campground, then trailers and motor homes would

get backed up on the Coast Highway on weekends and holidays while

waiting to check in, one at a time, at the ranger booth. (For an

example of this, see the Carlsbad campground. The line backs up

approximately half a mile.)

6) If there were a campground, then left-hand turns in and out of

El Morro would become even scarier than they are now, what with that

traffic barreling down the hill at high speed. But a senior citizen

trying to turn in to or out of El Morro in a motor home or even a

trailer? Well, Yikes! I wouldn't want to try it!

7) It might seem that installing a left-hand turn signal would

address reason No. 6 above, but a left-hand turn signal would also

mean that all traffic would have to stop while the RV's turn. This

means that local people who simply want to go straight down the

highway would have to pass a long line of RVs, then wait at the

signal while the RVs lumber in, checking in at the ranger gate, one

at a time. (By the way, motor homes and trailers trying to make a

left-hand turn off Coast Highway at the Mobil Station at Broadway to

go up Laguna Canyon, during the Art Festival, could cause a similar

backup. No fun.

8) Mostly, though, people LOVE El Morro just the way it is. I'm

speaking of the public, of people who don't even have trailers here.

El Morro works. It's real. It's beautiful. It's magic. It's simple.

It's accessible.

People are so glad there is this place called El Morro. From time

to time, I see letters in your paper from people who don't seem to

appreciate El Morro, who complain to the editor that it should be

wiped out to make parking for RVs and cars. The odd thing is that I

never actually SEE those people here at El Morro. I think they should

come here, use the public parking and start enjoying El Morro along

with everybody else. And that won't cost them -- or fellow taxpayers

-- one nickel.

* JOHN SACHER is an Encinitas resident.

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