Things, they are a-changin' in our little town

When we first moved to Fish Springs 25 years ago there was a lot of politicking and requests for master plan amendments going on. Stoddard Jacobsen owned a lot of the land in Fish Springs and the surrounding hills. He had big plans to build 668 dwellings, most of them condominiums, and a large equestrian center with housing for the staff. An airstrip was even built behind Chris Altemueller's house to transport people to the time-share condos that were planned. That's when the residents of Fish Springs rallied against it all. Apparently no one took out a permit to build the airstrip and the County made them tear it all out. One big victory for the residents of Fish Springs.

There's another hot issue brewing in our beautiful Fish Springs right now: excessive growth. Recently someone put lots of fliers at the mail lock boxes next to the Fish Springs Volunteer Fire Station. It must have been on one of our windy days (what wind?) as we found some of the bulletins out in the sagebrush across the street. They're titled, "Keep Fish Springs Rural, not 'Ruined' stroph."

We don't know where all this information about "250 additional home lots destined for Fish Springs" is coming from as the flier was anonymous. We are glad though that he listed the phone numbers of our county commissioners as we need to keep informed about what's happening here in our own neighborhood. We want to make sure that someone who builds their house on land that is designated "five-acre minimum" follows the rule and doesn't get a variance to build on one acre.

"Things, they are a-changin'."

In the old days, Toler Road did not connect Gardnerville to Fish Springs so we had to drive around the old dump road. All of Fish Springs was dirt roads back in 1978. The Pinenut Creek had water flowing year-round - and fish lived there too! There was no cable TV and the phone lines hardly made it to our house. We had a party line - you know, "one ring-a-ding, two ring-a-dings." The sky was very dark and there weren't many houses to light up the night. Large bands of wild horses ran freely through Fish Spring Flat and coyotes howled their mournful songs each night. We used to see Basque sheepherders tending their flocks in the surrounding hills and the wonderful old windmill on Windmill Road still pumped up water for the sheep to drink.

Residents of this pristine little valley are passionate about keeping Fish Springs rural and they have always turned out in force for the many master plan community workshops. A main concern is to keep the Bureau of Land Management land that surrounds the community as a buffer zone. People want to maintain open access to the BLM land and allow no development on it.

There's still a lot of rugged open space in Fish Springs and the folks who live here vow to protect its natural beauty and unique rural character. This is untamed country and Fish Springers like it that way.

n Linda Monohan can be reached at 782-5802.


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