We have a very holy, tranquil, lovely place here in our county that seems to be passed by on a daily basis, or people just don’t know it exists.
It is called the Alta Sierra Biblical Gardens and is located nearby, on Old Auburn Road, just off Highway 49.
In 1971, I had put my real estate license to work with a company called O’Brian Reality, at the entrance to Alta Sierra; the office later burned down. I was very new to the area at the time. One day, a man came in and was looking for 10 or 15 acres with a small stream on it. He said he wanted to build a Biblical Garden and had been looking and finding nothing. When asked to describe just what he wanted, he said God would tell him when he found it.
There was another young man in the office who knew the area well and volunteered to show us a property and took us on it. It was/is located on Old Auburn Road. To me, at that time, it looked to be a terrible looking property, a small stream completely overgrown with brush, mostly poison oak, it was on a small hill and very overgrown. The man walked through it and around for about 30 minutes, then put his hand on a large rock and said, “This is it. The lord has told me so.” These may not be his exact words but as I remember them. He bought the property, and I was most impressed with his devotion.
Over the next three years or so, every time I went by the property, he was out there with his truck, loading brush and other debris. I never saw him with any other help, and I feel he purposely was doing it all himself as his devotion to our lord. When he finished, I visited and walked the property and can’t tell you how impressed I was and still am. It is like the stations of the cross, and as you cross the small bridge, you see where he made his declaration when he had first seen the property. You then follow a path that climbs up the hill with resting places along the way. Statues and flowering shrubs are also along the way — such peace, tranquility and quietness with the trickle of the brook in the background.
You can truly feel the presence of God if you try and allow yourself.
The path continues up the hill until you reach the top where the cross and crucifixion is. For one man to have done all of this is truly true devotion. As the years passed and I was in business, there were times I was under great stress, and these Biblical Gardens gave me a place to come allowing me peace of mind and helped me make decisions. Wonderful relaxing and peaceful times, I needed so badly. It is a special holy place made by a special man. His name was John Summers, now deceased, and I am sure is in heaven.
Roy L. Crain, USAF retired, lives in Alta Sierra.
Statues and flowering shrubs are also along the way — such peace, tranquility and quietness with the trickle of the brook in the background.