Lake Hughes, California
|Country||United States of America|
|• Total||10.687 sq mi (27.680 km2)|
|• Land||10.623 sq mi (27.514 km2)|
|• Water||0.064 sq mi (0.166 km2) 0.60%|
|Elevation||3,228 ft (984 m)|
|• Density||61/sq mi (23/km2)|
|Time zone||Pacific (PST) (UTC-8)|
|• Summer (DST)||PDT (UTC-7)|
|GNIS feature IDs||1660877; 2583050|
|U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Lake Hughes, California; U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Lake Hughes, California|
Lake Hughes is an unincorporated community in the foothills of the Sierra Pelona Mountains, northwest of Palmdale and the Santa Clarita Valley, in the Angeles National Forest. It is on the sag pond waters of Hughes Lake and Elizabeth Lake (Los Angeles County, California). The community is agricultural in character, with a population of 649 at the 2010 census, but also has a strong recreational element centered on its four lakes. The town of Lake Elizabeth actually resides within Lake Hughes, sharing the same zip code. They together make the entire town of Lake Hughes.
Lake Hughes was named for Judge Griffith (Patrick) Hughes, who homesteaded the area around the turn of the 20th century. Settlers were drawn to the area because water was more plentiful than in the drier Santa Clarita and Antelope valleys below.
In 1907 William Mulholland, superintendent of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, started work on the Elizabeth Lake Tunnel for transporting water in the Los Angeles Aqueduct from Owens Valley to Los Angeles. Less than a half a mile east of Lake Hughes, the five-mile (8 km)-long tunnel is 285 feet (87 m) under the valley floor. The tunnel was driven from both ends. The north portal is at Fairmont Reservoir and the south in Bear Canyon (now Portal Canyon) just off of Green Valley. This 11-foot (3.4 m)-wide tunnel was driven 27,000 ft (8,200 m). through solid rock and met in the center within 1½ inches in line and 5/8 inches in depth. Work was around the clock and averaged about 11 feet (3.4 m) per day. The Elizabeth Lake tunnel was the largest single construction project on the Los Angeles Aqueduct and set speed records in its day.
C.A. Austin promoted Lake Hughes as a summer resort in 1924.
Lake Hughes is centered on the intersection of Pine Canyon Road and Lake Hughes Road, both of which are county highways, and ends at the Andrade Corner. The community includes four bodies of water — Elizabeth, Munz, Hughes, and Quail lakes. Lakes Hughes and Elizabeth — which in the early days dried up periodically — are in the canyons along the San Andreas Fault. Lake Hughes was previously known as West Elizabeth Lake.
Government, Associations and Infrastructure
Lake Hughes has its own community Town Council, The Lakes Town Council, which meets twice every month at the Lakes Community Center. The council helps plan community events (such as the yearly 49ers day festival and parade), hosts socials and mixers, and works with Los Angeles County officials on community planning and community standards.
The Ranch Club is a country club and golf course located in Lake Hughes. It has been open for over 60 years. The 8,400-square-foot (780 m2) clubhouse incorporates the historic Frakes homestead which was once a way station along the old stagecoach route.
There are many clubs and associations within the Lake Hughes/Elizabeth Lake Area. The most prominent is the Ranch Club, the town's Country Club and Golf Course. These include the Lakes Women's Club, The Go for Fun Club, Lakes And Valleys Conservancy Group, Lakes & Valleys Art Guild, Fire Safe Council and the Lakes Baseball & Softball Teams.
Local Businesses and Churches
Papas Country Store is the Local Market. The Mountain Yodeler is the local newspaper. Lake Hughes has its own post office, dedicated by President George Herbert Walker Bush in 1989. Churches include The Lakes Presbyterian Church, The Oaks Christian Retreat and The Saint Elizabeth Mission. The Rock Inn, Crossroads Tavern and The Greenside Grill are the local restaurants. The Rock Inn was built by Joel Hurd, Sr., in 1927 to 1929, first as a wood structure and then of steel, concrete, and stone after fire destroyed the first attempt. It served as an inn, store, and post office, and it still has gas pumps as evidence of its long history of serving passers-by. The Inn is built of diverse chunks of metamorphic rock, mostly granitic gneiss but with a variety of the other gneisses and perhaps granites. Several of the chunks contain cross-cutting veins reflecting a complex geologic history. The Rock Inn is still operating, as a bar, restaurant and hotel, and is frequented by motorcyclists in the spring and summer.
The 2010 United States Census reported that Lake Hughes had a population of 649. The population density was 60.7 people per square mile (23.4/km²). The racial makeup of Lake Hughes was 544 (83.8%) White (79.2% Non-Hispanic White), 19 (2.9%) African American, 7 (1.1%) Native American, 5 (0.8%) Asian, 1 (0.2%) Pacific Islander, 54 (8.3%) from other races, and 19 (2.9%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 104 persons (16.0%).
The Census reported that 626 people (96.5% of the population) lived in households, 23 (3.5%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 0 (0%) were institutionalized.
There were 300 households, out of which 55 (18.3%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 114 (38.0%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 26 (8.7%) had a female householder with no husband present, 16 (5.3%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 23 (7.7%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 4 (1.3%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 111 households (37.0%) were made up of individuals and 26 (8.7%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.09. There were 156 families (52.0% of all households); the average family size was 2.76.
The population was spread out with 105 people (16.2%) under the age of 18, 53 people (8.2%) aged 18 to 24, 143 people (22.0%) aged 25 to 44, 273 people (42.1%) aged 45 to 64, and 75 people (11.6%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 46.9 years. For every 100 females there were 104.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 100.0 males.
There were 400 housing units at an average density of 37.4 per square mile (14.5/km²), of which 175 (58.3%) were owner-occupied, and 125 (41.7%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 4.9%; the rental vacancy rate was 9.9%. 381 people (58.7% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 245 people (37.8%) lived in rental housing units.
In 1869 the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors designated Elizabeth Lake School District to serve the area. The district school was the only one between Los Angeles and Bakersfield. A wooden structure was built that lasted until it was replaced in the early 1930s by the adobe structure on the east side of Elizabeth Lake Road, a quarter mile north of Andrada Corner (intersection of San Francisquito and Elizabeth Lake Roads). The district's name was changed to Hughes-Elizabeth Lakes Union School District.
The Hughes-Elizabeth Lakes Union Elementary School District is a California Distinguished School and serves Kindergarten through 8th grade students. Children from the communities of Lake Hughes, Elizabeth Lake and Green Valley, as well as parts of Leona Valley and Pine Canyon, make up the student population, which is 81% White, 11% Hispanic and 8% other ethnic groups. The district has an approximate enrollment of 330 students.
In the spring of 1947 Roy Rogers purchased a new retreat at Lake Hughes. He named his home the “Sky Haven Ranch” and it is still referred to this today. The home of Roy Rogers and Dale Evans in Lake Hughes, served as an ideal location for their wedding party, where they hosted 600 guests, including Roy’s sisters and parents, who all lived in California at the time. Cheryl Rogers, the first Rogers child of school age, began 1st grade at Lake Hughes School. The school was a large one-room house “up the school road” (a dirt road) from the trading post, which consisted of the Post Office and a Filling Station.
Paul Koslo, a notable actor, is currently a resident of Lake Hughes, along with his wife and daughter.
- U.S. Census
- "Looking Back - Lake Hughes Being Rescued From Pollution," Daily News of Los Angeles (CA), February 25, 1989.Author: Patricia Farrell Aidem Daily News Staff Writer
- "Fine Mountain Resort On The Edge Of Antelope Valley," Antelope Valley Ledger-Gazette (CA)," December 18, 1925
- Reynolds, Jerry (1976–1994). "Chapter 30. The North Forty, History of the Santa Clarita Valley". The Signal. Retrieved 2009-03-22.
- Harold Wellman Fairbanks (1906). "Lower Lake Elizabeth on the Line of the Rift". The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley. Retrieved 2009-03-22.
- "Palmdale Station." Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. Retrieved on January 21, 2010.
- All data are derived from the United States Census Bureau reports from the 2010 United States Census, and are accessible on-line here. The data on unmarried partnerships and same-sex married couples are from the Census report DEC_10_SF1_PCT15. All other housing and population data are from Census report DEC_10_DP_DPDP1. Both reports are viewable online or downloadable in a zip file containing a comma-delimited data file. The area data, from which densities are calculated, are available on-line here. Percentage totals may not add to 100% due to rounding. The Census Bureau defines families as a household containing one or more people related to the householder by birth, opposite-sex marriage, or adoption. People living in group quarters are tabulated by the Census Bureau as neither owners nor renters. For further details, see the text files accompanying the data files containing the Census reports mentioned above.
- Ameluxen, Jack and Louise. Discover Green Valley Local History, Folktales and Facts (Second edition ed.). p. 36.
- District website
- Roy Rogers: A Biography, Radio History, Television Career Chronicle, Discography, Filmography, Comicography, Merchandising and Advertising History. Pages 31–33
- Lakes Town Council
- Lakes Community Center
- Lakes and Valleys Art Guild
- lakes and valleys conservancy
- Hughes Elizabeth Lakes Union School
- U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Lake Hughes, California
- U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Hughes Lake