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Tehachapi Native American Village Site Tour at Tomo Kahni State Historic Park

  • Nov 9, 2013 · 8:30 AM
  • This location is shown only to members

Please Note: read the directions carefully below BEFORE you RSVP 'Yes' for this event.

1) I am hosting this event for both Gay Foodies and Pleasure Palate.

2) The tour starts at 8:30 AM, but take note that Techachapi is a 2 hour drive from LA. So you must leave LA by 6:30 AM to reach the tour starting point in time.

3) I will arrange for a carpool for this event, but we will leave the carpool site no later than 6:15 AM. Or if there is enough interest, we can stay overnight on the Friday before at a local inn/hotel.

4) Tours are limited to 15 people and fill up fast so reservations are highly recommended. Call Bonnie Lee at[masked] and tell her you want to join the tour group under Robert Hemedes on Saturday, November 9th. If you procrastinate, you will lose out on the tour.

5) Tours begin with an 8:30 AM orientation at the Tehachapi Museum at 310 South Green Street, just south of East E Street. After the orientation, participants must caravan approximately 12 miles to the park; carpooling is encouraged. The primary road to the park is paved, however the last mile to the park is on a dirt and gravel road and high clearance vehicles are recommended. 

6) Tomo-Kahni is undeveloped, with no historic or contemporary structures. The moderately strenuous 1.5 mile walking tour begins at an elevation of approximately 4,000 feet and gains 800 feet in elevation. Parts of the trail are on uneven terrain. Participants should have the physical ability and stamina to make the hike as everyone must stay together. The complete tour, including orientation and driving time, takes about 4 hours. The tour is not recommended for children under 6.

7) What to Wear & Bring
As Tomo-Kahni is at an elevation of over 4,000 feet, the weather is variable, so layered clothing is recommended. Water, good walking shoes and sun protection are also necessary. 
Each participant should also bring a snack or sack lunch to eat during the snack break. 

8) Tour Tickets
Tour fee is $5 for adults

9) YOU CAN HELP - As a unit of the California State Park System, Tomo-Kahni is a protected area. When you participate in a tour, please remember not to pick up objects. Take only pictures and leave only footprints.

This event was recommended to me by a friend who has visited and attended events organized by the Tehachapi Museum. During Late Fall to early Spring, I host a lot of events in the inland areas (i.e. desert) because that's when I can enjoy the cooler weather. I am hosting another petroglyph related event in November. I don't expect this event to have more petroglyphs, but it is a lot easier to access and attend because it does not require being an American citizen to enter a military base like the other event. So come join me as we explore the Tehachapi area for a day trip!

From their website:

Tomo-Kahni State Historic Park was created as a unit of California State Parks in 1993 to protect and preserve the integrity of this unique site. Nestled atop a ridge in the Tehachapi Mountains, overlooking Sand Canyon to the east and the Tehachapi valley to the west, Tomo-Kahni, or "Winter Village," was the site of a Kawaiisu (Nuwa) village. The location was likely chosen for its moderate temperature and plentiful resources. The Kawaiisu migrated from the Great Basin and made the Tehachapi their home for two to three thousand years. The Kawaiisu are noted for their finely woven baskets of intricate and colorful design. 

Tour Information Due to the extremely sensitive nature of the site, Tomo-Kahni is available to the public by tour only. These tours are led by trained State Park Volunteers on weekends during the spring and fall months.

Tours begin with an orientation at the Tehachapi Museum. After an orientation, participants must caravan or carpool approximately 12 miles to the park. The moderately strenuous walking tour takes about three hours to complete; the overall tour, including orientation and return, takes about four hours.

Tomo-Kahni was created to preserve, protect and interpret the site of a Kawaiisu Native American Village. Because of the archeological and environmental sensitivity of the site, Tomo Kahni is available to the public by tour only. Tours are led by trained State Park docents and, due to sometimes extreme weather conditions, are only offered on weekends during the spring and fall. 

Bonus Round: If we are doing good on time, after the hike and lunch, we might swing by the Cesar Chavez Center.

Planning Your Visit: Admission: $3.00 per person.Hours: Open everyday from 10am-4pm 
Parking: Free 
Payments Accepted: Cash, Visa, Mastercard, Discover, American Express
Book & Gift Shop Hours: Open everyday from 10am-4pm Visitor Center Brochure
The Visitors Center is closed on all major holidays. 
Please call ahead to check availability. (661)[masked]Click on one of the links below for more information: Directions to the Visitor Center at the National Chavez Center

From Los Angeles (coming from the south):
Take the I-5 N towards Sacramento

Take the State Route 14 N exit towards Palmdale/Lancaster

Merge onto CA-14 N
Continue onto CA-58 BUS W 
Turn Left to merge onto CA-58 W

Take exit 139 toward Keene

Turn right toward Woodford-Tehachapi Road
Turn Right at Woodford Tehachapi Road
National Chavez Center will be on your left
Google Maps URL:
From Bakersfield (coming from the north):
Take the CA-58 E/Barstow-Bakersfield Hwy/Blue Star Memorial Hwy 
Take exit 139 toward Keene

Turn left toward Woodford-Tehachapi Rd

Turn right at Woodford-Tehachapi Rd
National Chavez Center will be on your left

Cesar Chavez's legacy and values continue to be shared by the Chavez foundation through the duel roles of the National Chavez Center:

 - Promoting, preserving and managing the sprawling facilities at Nuestra Senora Reina de La Paz (Our Lady Queen of Peace) in Keene, Calif., La Paz for short.
 - Carrying out the work of preserving and promoting the legacy of Cesar Chavez. A place to learn and be inspired. Set on 187 acres amid oaks and spectacular rock outcroppings in California's Tehachapi Mountains, the National Chavez Center at La Paz in Keene is where Cesar lived and labored during his last quarter century. It was his spiritual harbor, removed from often bitter struggles in the fields and cities. Here he worked, strategized and planned. 

With easy access just off the Hwy. 58 freeway, there is the 7,000 square foot Visitor Center with large exhibit galleries, including Cesar's carefully preserved office and library, and the beautiful Memorial Gardens around his grave site. On the north portion of the grounds stands the recently renovated Villa La Paz, a sprawling world-class conference and educational center in the restored 17,000-sq. ft. mission-style structure where Cesar held community gatherings and meetings with movement leaders. Villa La Paz now hosts space, resources and capacity building for civic, business, community and other organizations to meet and plan in the shadow of Cesar's legacy. 

Also in the mountain hamlet of Keene, at the Hwy. 58 exit, is the historic Keene Cafe, owned and operated by the National Chavez Center. Dating back to 1920, the Keene Cafe delicious breakfast and lunch offerings attract regulars from surrounding communities and cattle ranches in the Tehachapi Mountains and the southern Central Valley as well as visitors to the National Chavez Center and railroad buffs on their way to the nearby world-renowned 19th Century Tehachapi Loop. Carrying on the legacy. Preserving and promoting Cesar Chavez's legacy is undertaken by the Chavez foundation by educating the public through its popular Speakers Bureau, by coordinating commemorations and working with those honoring the farm labor and civil rights leader in their local communities, by working with professionals producing books, articles and films about Cesar and the movement, and by preserving his intellectual property rights and handling licensing requests. 

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  • Keong

    Thanks Robert for arranging this enlightening Tour. I learned a few things more than I would be sitting at home or roaming locally. The guide and docents were extremely enthusiastic and knowledgeable in their field. They suggested several possibilities of why the art effects were there but never definitively put it down to one scenario. It was quite refreshing.

    The State Park Guide also picked apart a dried coyote scat to show what it ate, such as small furry animals and cypress berries.

    Lastly it dawned on me that man has been making its mark on walls very early on. There may have been more cultural and spiritual reasons for these paintings but modern graffiti is also about making a mark about oneself or one for the gang, minus the spiritual aspects, perhaps. Perhaps in the future some of these graffiti will be viewed as curiously as we view the cave paintings and wonder in awe what it was like living back then. LOL

    1 · November 9, 2013

  • Mijo

    Thank you Robert for another awesome event! So exciting to see all that historic stuff on the field. Lunch was fun, too. Indian bread was the bomb.

    November 9, 2013

  • Mijo

    Hi Robert, super excited about this tour! I'm contemplating whether to drive on my own or to join carpool if there is any room. How much would you estimate to give the driver? Do you have any stop planned on the road?

    November 7, 2013

    • Mijo

      Thanks Robert. So this means that I don't need to pack lunch? Do you have specific restaurant in your mind?

      November 7, 2013

    • Robert

      I don't have plans to go on Friday night. I am planning to wake up really early on Saturday and head there around 6:00 AM. The meeting point would be the Sepulveda Garden Center at 6 AM. I would highly recommend packing snacks in lieu of breakfast. If we arrive at Tehachapi early, we could stop by a local donut store or fast food to grab a quick meal.

      November 7, 2013

  • Steev

    Confirmed my name w/the Natl Parks office 10/16.

    October 16, 2013

4 went

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