Some enterprising Mill Valley kids reportedly took Animal House to another level recently, building an elaborate party pad in the woods that the local homeowners' association must pay to have taken down.
Dubbed the "Wolf Den" by its unknown inhabitants, the hang-out was built near Horse Hill and the Scott Valley Swimming and Tennis Club. It featured several large pieces of furniture, wood flooring, tables suspected to have been taken from Tam High, a shade structure, small chairs and a number of wooden shipping palates. A drawing that read "Welcome to tha Wolf Den" was inscribed on one of the tables alongside a sketch of a gun and a wolf smoking a joint.
"We've never seen anything like the wolf den," said Patsy Love, general manager of the Scott Valley Swimming and Tennis Club. "There's no way you can get a car back there, so the fact that they walked this stuff in is crazy. It had to be done in the middle of the night."
With cleanup taking place today, police, city officials and the nearby homeowners association said they are stepping up efforts to monitor activity on the nearby open space, primarily because of the inherent fire danger that comes with kids hanging out in the woods in the summer.
After receiving word of the den by neighbors, Mill Valley Police investigated and determined it sat on open space owned by the recently renamed Mill Valley Meadows Homeowners Association. The group is paying between $300-$500 to have the remnants of the den removed today, according to its interim president, who asked not to be named for fear of retribution directed at her son.
Mill Valley City Councilman Garry Lion, who lives in the area, checked out the den Sunday afternoon. By that time, it had been ransacked and the furniture was piled atop one another, he said.
"I'm not sure if they did that because they knew they'd been discovered or if someone else did it," Lion said.
Given the size of the furniture and wood in the den and the narrow, overgrown trail leading up to its location, getting everything in there was "no small undertaking," he said.
Love said the tennis club, neighbors and the city will be watching the area closely from now on.
"I imagine this den had probably been there a lot longer than we think," Love said. "But everybody is on top of this now."