Member
Your donation supports our high-quality, inspiring and commercial-free programming.
Support Icon
Discover all the ways you can make a difference.
Support Icon
The Leadership, Advancement, Membership and Special Events teams are here to help.

Expansion of California Coastal National Monument Under Consideration

Support Provided By
Tidal flats and the Point Arena Lighthouse.
Tidal flats and the Point Arena Lighthouse. Photo: SP8254/Flickr/Creative Commons License

"Expand to Land" is the battle cry of supporters of a public lands bill in Northern California.

They want to see the nearly 1,300 acres near Mendocino -- known as Point Arena-Stornetta Public Lands -- made part of the California Coastal National Monument, a unique and somewhat intangible designation that protects thousands of small islands, rocks, and other exposed natural features off the coastline between Mexico and Oregon.

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell is in Mendocino County today for a public meeting to hear the community's vision for the lands that are now under the control of the Bureau of Land Management.

Scott Schneider, president and CEO of Visit Mendocino County, says adding the Stornetta Public Lands to the California Coastal National Monument would preserve the area for generations to come.

"Currently the California Coastal National Monument is only the rocks off of the coast of California," he explains. "So this would be the first part of a monument that would actually be on land and that people could access."

The lands include more than two miles of coastline, a small island, and the estuary of the Garcia River, which is prime Coho and Chinook salmon habitat.

Schneider adds the designation would also boost Mendocino County's tourism, which supports close to 5,000 jobs and more than $20 million in state and local taxes.

Point Arena is located north of San Francisco and south of Fort Bragg. Schneider says the ultimate goal of Visit Mendocino County is to bring more visitors to the area and have them stay longer.

"Having this be designated in such a beautiful part of the county that, quite frankly, is not one of the higher-visited parts of the county, would bring a lot more people here," he says. "They would really get a sense for what our county has to offer to visitors."

The Point Arena-Stornetta public lands bill, introduced by U.S. Rep. Jared Huffman, passed the House Committee on Natural Resources this summer.

Lawmakers have also urged President Barack Obama to include the area in the monument by executive designation under the Antiquities Act.

Like SoCal Wanderer on Facebook and follow @SoCal_Wanderer on Twitter.

Support Provided By
Read More
Bright orange California poppies are in full bloom in a meadow in the foreground of the photo, Just beyond the poppies are a line of tall, dark trees. And off in the distance is a magnificent mountain range — the Santa Ynez Mountains.

6 Best Garden Adventures in Santa Barbara for Spring

Whether you're seeking a wonderland of succulents, an explosion of fragrance and color or simply a serene setting to live your best garden life, Santa Barbara and its surrounding communities offer fascinating flora. Here's how to prepare for your visit, what you'll find and how to make the most of your time there
A large spider sculpture, with the body of the spider replaced with a full-sized Volkswagen Beetle, towers over a walkway leading up to a building with a sign that reads, "Hole in the Wall" over the door.

9 Desert Oddities to Explore While You're Visiting the Coachella Valley

Here are nine oddities worth a desert detour for a closer look — because no matter how odd they may seem, your eyes aren't deceiving you!
A metallic, geometric structure serves as a canopy over gas pumps.

8 Amazing SoCal Gas Stations to Soften the Blow of Fuel Prices

Here are 8 of the best SoCal gas stations for bringing some magnificence to the mundane — whether you're on your daily commute or using up your savings to reach a farther flung locale.