Palomar Mountain Spring Water
This essay is in the process of being edited / revised.
Palomar Spring Water is a company that supplies water to a variety of water brands is found in a variety of mass retailers including Albertson's, Ralph's and Costco. In addition, their quality product is utilized in a wide range of products manufactured by such companies as Snyder Beverage Company or Ross Swiss Dairies.
Environmental water (rain, sleet, snow, etc.) flows through the ground into an underground reservoir known as the water table where it is pushed by a strong natural current through Palomar mountain. (see Underground Reservoir below for more info).
After studying the mountain, proprietor George Ravenscroft noticed that there were patches of Sycamore trees throughout the landscape. Upon further research, it was discovered that this particular breed of tree could not exist at such low temperatures on the mountain unless there was a very close, constant water supply. After surveying the spots from a helicopter, Ravenscroft was able to pinpoint not one, but many of the Palomar springs. (see Spring Discovery Details for more info). These Woodwardia ferns were also important in finding the entrances to the spring. Just like the sycamores, these small plants also required a constant stream of fresh water to thrive in the cold climate.
When the water first starts to soak through the soil, the numerous trees and shrubs provide for a preliminary root based filtering process. As it continues, it reaches the older, harder layers of the mountain and seeps through the very fine cracks of solid rock. The numerous layers or ancient earth form a very fine natural filter that gives off virtually no residue into the water. The water then eventually makes it from its underground reservoir to the surface through a manipulation of existing pressure flow. These specifications allow the water to be legally defined as ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œspring water.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
Click on image to read caption.
In order to avoid the contaminants found in the soil due to decomposing natural material, the water is harvested from the center, or "heart," of the spring. No pesticides whatsoever were ever used at this site, so these method is utilized merely to avoid as much contact with the soil's natural contaminants as possible.
To keep a constant flow of fresh water, and to help maintain the existing symbiotic relationship with the spring and the mountain, the flow is kept constant. The harvesting pump merely siphons some of the water flowing through the system when needed, so nothing, including the quality of the water or the environment, is drastically affected.
Here, one can see the outlet of the pumps. A great deal of the water merely flows through the system and returns to the environment, allowing for the system to operate as it always has for hundreds of years. (see Pump Information below for more info)
In addition to gathering water for commercial consumption in bottled packages, the owner of Palomar Water also allows any passerby to buy a gallon at the very cheap price of $.25 per gallon. (see Distribution Details below for more info)
These tanks store the water that is harvested from the spring. Many of the harvesting sites require the water to be pumped up or down the mountain at rather high pressures, making strict regulation of the pipeline essential to its stability and success. If one can imagine miles of underground pipeline, hundreds of pounds of pressure and thousands of gallons, then it quickly changes from just a water leak to a major ecological disaster if a problem were to occur.
Strung along the highway are tanks where the large trucks gather the fresh water. After the water is collected, it is usually transported to the nearest bottling station in an effort to minimize the costs and pollution of moving such a large, heavy commodity. (see Prospectus and Future Analysis below for more info)
This is the exact opposite of mineral water, in which harvesters want to keep the infused minerals for their supposed health benefits. Instead, Palomar produces naturally cold, clean water. The combination of very efficient natural filtering and a consistant climate provide for an ideal environment in which to harvest this commodity. The cool temperatures allow little bacterial growth, while the quick and constant flow enables no stagnant water. It is truly a natural spring.
People from all over are reported to visit here just so that they can buy some water. Traditionally, it has been the lower classes that were concerned with prepackaged water due to the poor municiple supplies, but the desire for good tasting water has been sought out more recently by the upper and middle socioeconomic classes. It's not only a health factor now, but a palatable one as well.
Ravenscroft is a big supporter of clean industry and made sure that the systems he installed were very easy on the ecology of the area. In fact, every single harvesting pump was designed and built with very heavy involvement from the owner. When they were installed, every plant that needed to be dug up to put in the pipeline was put back right where it was excavated. Ravenscroft's dedication to the environment as an industrialist is as refreshing as his product.
More research notes on How Water Is Made are here: