The History and Beauty of Water: Pulgas Water Temple, Redwood City, CA

Pulgas Water Temple, Photo by Eva Barrows
Pulgas Water Temple, Photo by Eva Barrows

The Pulgas Water Temple is a celebration of man’s ingenuity, a reminder of a long controversial process that brought water from Yosemite to the people of the San Francisco Bay Area. I was curious about how a replica of an ancient Greek structure came to be nestled in the rolling hills of Redwood City, CA. So I read the educational signs along the walking path. I found that the Hetch Hetchy aqueduct was created based on Roman and Greek engineering methods, and ends at this spot with the water finally flowing into the adjoining Crystal Springs reservoir.

Rushing Water, Photo by Eva Barrows
Rushing Water, Photo by Eva Barrows

As I walked around I could hear the rushing of water like a great river making its way to a waterfall or the flow of water at a waterslide park, yet I could see no evidence for what I was hearing. I walked around the Temple itself admiring the columns and listening as the noise grew louder. I looked toward the reservoir in the distance and saw the source of the rushing water. The outlet of the aqueduct is hidden below the Pulgas Water Temple parkland and steers the water in open air beyond the park to the reservoir.

Crystal Springs Reservoir, Photo by Eva Barrows
Crystal Springs Reservoir, Photo by Eva Barrows

The surrounding landscape of moist coastal forest, sparkling water of the reservoir and crisp bright blue sky was simply stunning on this winter day. The beauty of the setting is so much appreciated, that at least two bridal groups were planning their upcoming weddings at the Temple during the time I was there. The Temple is an ideal place to have a romantic picnic or just sit and relax for a while. I soaked up some much needed warm sun and fresh air on my visit.

Author at Temple, Selfie by Eva Barrows
Author at Temple, Selfie by Eva Barrows

Visit the park Monday through Friday 9am to 4pm at 56 Cañada Road, Redwood City, CA 94062.

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