April 22, 2022 – The Wilderness Land Trust has transferred a 49-acre mining claim in Lundy Canyon in the Eastern Sierra to the Inyo National Forest for permanent protection. This high-priority property is part of the iconic view from a popular hiking trail into the upper entrance of Lundy Canyon. The Trust has now protected the property from private development to conserve Mill Creek, safeguard wildlife habitat and ensure recreational access with protected views for the public.
The Trust partnered with the Mono Lake Committee and Eastern Sierra Land Trust to educate the public and raise the funds needed to purchase and then transfer this property to the Inyo National Forest.
This Upper Lundy Canyon property is now a part of the Inyo National Forest and Hoover Wilderness. The property protects dramatic vistas and vital habitat for endangered Sierra Nevada Bighorn sheep. It is located just east of Yosemite National Park and west of Mono Lake in Mono County.
“The protection of Upper Lundy Canyon provides unfettered and iconic views from the Lundy Canyon Trail, a favorite Eastern Sierra location for local hikers, native wildflowers and wildlife,” says Aimee Rutledge, vice president and senior lands specialist, The Wilderness Land Trust.
“There’s a reason that the Inyo National Forest marked this inholding as a high-priority for acquisition – it’s a spectacular and special place. The collaboration between ESLT, The Wilderness Land Trust and the Mono Lake Committee to protect this gem is an example of what can be accomplished when we work together”, says Kay Ogden, ESLT’s Executive Director/CEO.
“We are pleased that this partnership effort has made this old mining parcel a part of the Inyo National Forest. Like a final piece of a jigsaw puzzle, this retired inholding completes the protection of a spectacular part of Lundy Canyon including scenic mountain views, critical Bighorn Sheep habitat, and prized watershed and recreation values,” says Geoff McQuilkin, Executive Director of the Mono Lake Committee.
The Trust is grateful to its supporters, the Sam Dietrich family and Mono Market, and its partners at the Mono Lake Committee and Eastern Sierra Land Trust for helping to protect this critical landscape.