CCC water-supply saga should end well |

CCC water-supply saga should end well

With five-minute showers as the order of the day, the California Conservation Corps’ water supply problem has forced it to live up to its name.

The CCC plans to drill a well at its Echo Summit facility next month — the first phase in a two-part job priced at $108,000.

The natural spring at the facility had all but dried up more than a year ago, forcing the state working group to haul its water in on a truck. About 2,500 gallons are brought in nearly every other day, Administrator Gary Ray said.

The state requires the facility provide water to its 60 people for drinking, cooking, showers and the septic system. At one point the operation of the facility was jeopardized, but extensions were granted until the state Finance Department issued an OK to drill a well on the property. It takes about a week to do so.

“We thought all along we’d get funded, but until the state passed its budget, we had to put it on hold,” Ray said.

Following the September budget approval, the state then approved the job. Consequently, the CCC put the project out to bid and recently awarded it to Canepa & Sons, which has an office in South Lake Tahoe.

After the well is dug, crews will need to build a trench between the well and the facility. The span is about 100 feet.

One concern remains.

Ray hopes the contractor’s work crews will be able to move its heavy machinery in and out of the area as winter bears down on the region.

The access road to the facility receives heavy snow during an average winter. This one may be more severe than other seasons.

Winter has already provided the crew a bit of a precursor to the season with last weekend’s storm.

The CCC site lost electricity Friday through Sunday. The crew kept calm and pulled out candles, flashlights and propane lanterns.

“We told them, ‘In a perfect world, you wouldn’t have to go through that.’ So they looked at it as a camping experience,” Ray said.

— Susan Wood can be reached at (530) 542-8009 or via e-mail at

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