More to Explore: California Coastal Monument

"California Coastal NM" by Bureau of Land ManagementPerhaps the least known National Monument but one of the most viewed, California Coastal Monument has grown in size thanks to a new extension through the Antiquities Act on March 11th by President Obama.

California Coastal Monument was extended to include 1,665 additional acres of land along the Mendocino County coastline. This also means that the general public also now has access to these areas that play host to some of the most diverse wildlife in the world—it’s a roosting area for birds, breeding grounds for the finicky Silverspot butterfly, and a lounge spot for harbor seals. With 12 miles of additional trails now incorporated into the California Coastal Monument, you’ll want to plan a trip there soon to see the beautiful terrain for yourself.

The Point Arena-Stornetta Public Lands is the additional area tacked on to the California Coastal Monument and it connects up to Manchester State Park. More trails in the park and camping spots allow you to enjoy the sound of the surf at night after a day of exploring. That’s just the beginning, however, because it all then connects you up to the California Coastal Trail. That makes for 1,200 miles of coastal beauty to enjoy. Talk about amazing!

So why is the extension of the California Coastal Monument so important? Before, the monument only protected islets, reefs and rock outcroppings from the coast of California to a distance of 12 nautical miles (22 km) along the entire 840-mile (1,350 km) long California coastline but not the actual land along those areas. It was basically protecting the areas that couldn’t be developed because of rocky, unsuitable terrain. With the extension, it protects a much larger area with the addition of the Point Arena-Stornetta Public Lands, keeping the area safe from development.

If you want to get into the specifics, you can read the full proclamation from President Obama here. We have our own Arkansan, President Bill Clinton, to thank for the original establishment of the California Coastal Monument. The Antiquities Act, or the law that gives the President the power to declare National Monuments, recently came under fire by a bill named EPIC (“Ensuring Public Involvement in the Creation of National Monuments Act”) but it didn’t pass, fortunately, helping ensure that lands will be able to be preserved for the future generations of Americans (and for us to go play in!).

One Comment

  1. […] Wednesday, President Obama announced another new national monument, making the Organ Mountains his second national monument created in 2014. The Organ Mountains are located in Doña Ana County outside of Las Cruces, New […]

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