Tremors: Map of Perfection Found!

You remember the map Kevin Bacon rips off the wall of Chang’s store?

“This valley is just one long smorgasbord!”

I thought this might have been based on a real map, just retouched through some old-school cut & paste. It seems awfully busy to have been drawn from scratch for a couple shots less than a second long. I Google searched a couple of the unusual place names (Zumwalt Meadow) and managed to confirm that this is a real location. The location is the Cedar Grove area of Kings Canyon National Park, in California.

But what was the exact version of the map used for Perfection Valley?

It couldn’t have been made before 1990, but it might have been made any time prior to that. I started searching Google Images, and then eBay. I was able to dismiss many maps as being too plain, with none of the shaded relief of the mountains seen on screen. Then, I saw something that piqued my curiosity:


It was the right park, it was from 1987, and it was all green. Not necessary, certainly, for a skilled artist, but then I noticed the font used for the title: Benguiat, the same as on the map of Perfection. These factors seemed to be too much of a coincidence to ignore, so, without a photo of the interior maps to confirm it, I took the chance and bought it on eBay.

When I got it in the mail, I flipped through it and there it was:


Obviously, some retouching had been done, but now I knew exactly where to start looking. This map was published by AAA / The Automobile Club of Southern California. Strangely, the compass rose is still there, but the legend is gone, covered by a pasted-in piece of another map. Tonight I’m going to start scanning. Further bulletins as events warrant.

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