SAN LUIS OBISPO..CO.
California Department of Forestry / U.S. Forest Service
January 2009 - Ron Kemnow photo
CALIENTE MOUNTAIN (AWS)
Los Padres National Forest
May 5, 1939: "A lookout station will be located on Midway peak, southwest of Fellows, and from this peak there will be a good view of all surrounding country. This lookout station will also be a PWA project." (Bakersfield Californian)
April 6, 1940: "The road to the top of Midway Peak, southwest of Fellows, has been completed and work will be started on a lookout station in the near future. It is a one-way road and now open to the general public. The road was built by WPA labor." (Bakersfield Californian)
June 14, 1940: "New items added were Midway lookout station, $750." (Bakersfield Californian)
July 31, 1940: "Work is expected to be completed on the new lookout station which is located seven miles west of Fellows on Midway peak within the next 10 days.
The building is made of wood construction with a cement floor and consists of one room downstairs with a garage. The dimensions of the room downstairs are 20x20 feet, and the lookout room is 14x14 feet.
One person will be stationed at the lookout point during the summer months, and will be connected with the fire station in Fellows by short wave radio. The road to Midway peak was completed last spring. It is a one way-road and not open to the general public." (Bakersfield Californian)
September 6, 1940: "The West Side's newest piece of fire fighting equipment, a lookout station, stands atop 3600-foot Midway peak, overlooking thousands of square miles of valley and mountain land.
The county forestry department has installed the most modern fire finding equipment in the new lookout, according to West Side Fire Warden Harry Van Horne. Inside the glass enclosed second floor is an Osborne fire finder which is used to determine the exact location of a fire.
A two-way radio sends and receives information from the lookout's main base at Taft. A licensed radio operator fire fighter will be on duty at the lookout about six months out of the year, according to Mr. Van Horne. At the present time Orval Sweigart is in charge of the station, relieved by Eugene DeClue.
Before the station could be built, 4 miles of road to the top of the peak had to be graded. The lookout is situated 14 miles northwest of Taft behind Fellows. The base of the building is 20 x 20 feet with the lookout tower 14 x 14.
By revolving on his chair the lookout can see 30 miles up and down the San Joaquin valley, the Carissa plains, the Cuyama valley and Mount Abel." (Bakersfield Californian)
California Department of Forestry