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Hodel's Plan for Hetch Hetchy

August 16, 1987

My spine tingled as I read of the interior secretary's idea to restore Hetch Hetchy Valley. Could my wildest dreams come true?

There is no grander a place than Yosemite Valley--and no more tragic a place than Hetch Hetchy.

My wife and I visited the valley on a cold, blustery spring afternoon. Except for the lone caretaker, we were the only ones there. The falls were at their fullest and O'Shaughnessy Dam shone in an overcast sky. Here we were in the "holiest of natural temples," but with a feeling of emptiness. The trail we followed ended shortly after crossing the dam. We stopped to look and saw the heart of Hetch Hetchy--drowned under 350 feet of water.

As it turns out, the water of Hetch Hetchy is uncommonly pure--but this valley wouldn't have it any other way. Hetch Hetchy has always given us her best. It's time we gave her our best.

JAMES H. FRITZSCHE

Los Angeles

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