Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Lover’s Warning

Mount Konochti and
Clear Lake
Native American lore states that Mount Konochti in northern California has magical powers. Descendants of one tribe believe the spirit of one of their ancient chiefs dwells within this mountain.

Some still believe this mountain can predict the future.

Centuries ago, the Pomo Indians lived on one of  the islands in Clear Lake—which sits at the base of Mount Konochti.

According to the legend . . .

The tribe’s wise chief, Konochti, had a lovely young daughter, Lupiyomi.

A rival chief from a neighboring tribe, Kahbel, approached Konochti and asked for Lupiyomi’s hand in marriage. Konochti refused. He felt the two were not compatible.

He knew they had been meeting on the sly but physical attraction was not enough. He felt since they came from different tribes they had different values, which would not bode well for a union.

Kahbel left, angry. Driven by his pride and lust he returned one night and kidnapped Lupiyomi. It is said he used his magical powers to build a causeway to the island were Lupiyomi lived.

This narrow strip of land cuts Clear Lake in half. It can still be seen and is known as the Narrows.

Konochti gathered his men together and fought Kahbel and his men on the Narrows. Both chiefs having magical powers hurled huge boulders at each other. These large rocks are littered across the slopes of Mount Konochti today.

Chief Konochti managed to kill Chief Kahbel but he did not walk away unscathed. He was mortally wounded and died.

The lore states the spirits then transformed Konochti’s, as he was dying, into the 4200-foot high mountain that bears his name. This is a common theme in Native American tales—powerful spirits are said to remain as notable landmarks.

Since, the belief is that Chief Konochti gives advise to lovers about the future of their relationships.

Hopeful couples, for years have stood along the shores of Clear Lake and looked toward this mountain. They then ask the chief if their relationship will last.

They always receive an answer within 24 hours. If the sun shines on the mountain the next day, Chief Konochti approves their relationship but if a fog or mist covers the peak, the couple should step back and think about their decision.

If storm clouds appear over the mountain, the couple is not meant to be together so they should pursue other relationships.

Most drastic of all is if one of the large boulders that remain dislodges and tumbles down the slope, this means the relationship will end in a murder.

Of course, this is just a legend but a running joke is some couples regret they did not heed Chief Konochti’s warning.

For the last 150 years, most of the land around Mount Konochti—which is a dormant volcano-- was owned privately. Recently, Lake County purchased some of the land, plus the highest peak. They plan to develop a public park. 

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