Ma-ki-la  LbNA # 9110 (ARCHIVED)

Placed DateSep 16 2004
LocationSanta Rosa, CA
Planted ByMimulus    
Found By The Olde Oak
Last Found May 20 2007
Hike Distance?

Check out the above URL and this will give you directions. The tasting room is open daily 10:00-4:30, though you need not visit there to enjoy the site or find the box.

This is an easy walk. Plenty of free parking. Best time to visit is late June/early July when the lavender is blooming, but the gardens are beautiful year-round, so save some time to stroll through the grounds. No poison oak at the box site but if you were to continue up the hill (and no need too) you may encounter some.

What follows is an excerpt from "Sacred Sonoma" by
Beth Winegarner.

"The Pomo believed that the world was basically flat, floating in a giant sea of water -- a likely conclusion considering the close proximity of the Pacific Ocean.

Local weather patterns paved the way for the conception of a host of deities. Among these was Hummingbird, whose movements were likened to that of lightning. The hummingbird a sacred animal to the Pomo, and its murder would bring on terrible thunderstorms. Hummingbird nests were considered powerful charms.

Hummingbird had a nephew, called ma-ki-la or Thunder Man, who was described as having white skin and very long hair. His eyes and coat were made of abalone shells, and he possessed a pair of buzzard wings which, when flapped, would create loud claps of thunder. While lightning was a fortuitous sign for the Pomo, thunder was considered an ill omen. Rain Woman would appear when she was summoned by Thunder Man. She would shake the rain from her buckskin clothes, and at first the rain would be vigorous. But when she met Thunder Man in the west, the rain would soften. And when she reached the eastern mountains the sun would return. Unsurprisingly, this describes a typical storm in Sonoma County as it enters from the coastline in the west, storming over areas like Cazadero and Guerneville and gentling as it approaches the hills on the eastern rim of Santa Rosa, Sonoma, and the Mayacama mountains."

The Pomo people considered Bennett Mountain, the foot at which this winery sits, to be a sacred site. The false summit you see from the winery is called Eagle or Buzzard landing depending on whom you talk to. Matanzas is spanish for "slaughter" and the creek and reservoir in this valley are named Matanzas, hence the winery's name. Apparently the Vallejo family operated a slaughterhouse on the creek, and the name stems from that, and not a past battle.

Please also let me know if you find the box!

Find the picnic grounds above/north of the upper parking lot. Cross the footbridge, say hi to the octopus tree on your left. Proceed up the trail to the topmost picnic table. Beyond this table, looking up the hill you will see 6 oaks. A single oak leaning over as if limboing, a group of three sisters, and then twins. Look in the cracks of the moss covered boulders at the duo's feet.