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In Search of
La Llorona

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Placed: March 2007
Placed By: Wanda & Pete for WWW (Formerly known as Chuck and Amy)
Location: Borrego Springs, San Diego County, CA

The Legend of LaLlorona (pronounced "lah yoh roh nah") "The Wailing or weeping Woman"

First of all I have say that there are many different versions of the story of La Llorona. Here I will present the legend as I have heard it.

There once lived in Mexico a beautiful but poor girl named Maria that fell in love with a wealthy, upper class Spanish man. They didnt marry but she had two children by him. After the children were born, the Spanish nobleman started to wander, lost his love for Maria, but still paid attention to the children. One day Maria heard that he was going to marry someone of his own upper class. Maria became enraged. She irrationally only thought of how the man had wronged her and how she could take revenge out on him. Blinded by her jealousy and love for the man, she took her two children that were fathered by him to the river. Still blinded by rage she drowned both of her children and let their bodies float away. As soon as the act was done she came to her senses and realized the truth of what she had done but it was too late. She lost her mind and became insane. She cried and called out to her children but it was already too late. As her last act, she drowned herself in the same river. This is where the story becomes supernatural.

Her own death didnt stop her from searching the riverbanks. Totally out of her mind with grief, she still wanders along rivers, lakes and streams looking for her children. Now though she is know as La Llorona (the weeping woman). When people see her apparition, shes still crying for her lost children and you can hear her say"Mis nios...donde estn mis nios?" (my children where are my children?). She has been seen many times throughout the American southwest and Northern Mexico. It is said that variations of her appearance have been witnessed as far north as Montana, Chicago, New York and as far flung as South America and the Philippines. While doing some research on La Llorona I learned that that she is fairly well known in Puerto Rico and a report of her sighting was recently made there. The most common fear of La Llorona is that if you see her, she will try to lure you to her and then drown you as she did her own children years ago.

Read more about La Llorona at the following sites:

In Search of La Llorona Clues (Written by Wanda and Pete)

A desperately needed waterhole in the high desert along the PCT about 4 days walk north of the Mexican border if backpacking, or a near drive-by for those equipped with wheels.

When Chuck from CT first told us he had a box we could plant for him on our recent trip to CA, we were quite excited to find out it was "La Llorona", the one who weeps, as Wanda remembered singing a hauntingly "picante" song about that "Crying Woman" many years ago while studying at Cemanahuac in Cuernavaca, Mexico. We'll leave it to Chuck to tell the story behind the song and the box on his webpage. Meanwhile, we thought it would be appropriate to put this box out in the high desert of Southern California, just west of Anza-Borrego State Park, at one of the very infrequent springs that Wanda had to depend on while backpacking the Pacific Crest Trail three times through from Mexico to Canada in the 1980s and 1990s.

The spring we chose to plant the box near is called Barrel Springs, appearing almost like a concrete miracle amidst greenery after many miles of dry twisting trail. On the PCT northbound in the 1980s it literally required 26 miles of waterless backpacking to this wonderous spot from the last water source in Chariot Canyon and another long stretch to the next water source in Aqua Caliente Creek. (Nowadays, apparently, backpackers can get "rehydrated" at a little water stand set up in season near Scissors Crossing!)

Anyway, to get to Barrel Springs the quick and easy way, just head south from the Pacific Crest Trail crossing on S-22 between Borrego Springs and Warner Springs. Follow your ears to the surprising source of splashing water. ("La Llorona" is usually crying buckets.) From the water spout on the south side of the water tank, walk about 45 steps southwest to the remnants of a huge blackened fallen tree, then walk another 45 steps southbound along the erosion gully path to locate a large standing tree about 12 steps to the left. Facing that tree, find a rock with flatter top than most, at the base of the boulder pile, about 6 steps to the right of the tree. Look under that big rock's western side to find "La Llorona", covered with bark, weeping in the dark. Please rehide her with care and respect for this very special place!

Hope you enjoy your travels through California!

Before you set out, please read the waiver of responsibility and disclaimer.

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