Success! American River Conservancy Completes 10,115 Acre Granite Chief Property Acquisition

Granite Chief / American River Headwaters, CA Photo Credit: American River Conservancy

On Wednesday, August 5thAmerican River Conservancy (ARC) closed escrow on, thus permanently protecting, 9,955 acres of land known as the American River Headwaters/Granite Chief Property.  These acquired lands adjoin another 160 acres acquired by ARC in 2013, and completes the purchase of section numbers 1, 29, 35 and 36 on this mapThis acquisition has protected and preserved the largest private inholding on the Sierra Nevada Crest south of Donner Summit.
This forested landscape is at the headwaters of the North and Middle Forks of the American River. The property is immediately west of North Lake Tahoe, CA, the Olympic Valley/Squaw Valley Ski Area and the Pacific Crest Trail.
The $50,000 Conservation Alliance grant awarded to ARC in 2014 was instrumental in initiating a massive fundraising campaign, enabling ARC and its partners to raise the $14.5 million required for this conservation project including $11,000,000 for the purchase price and transaction expense; $1.15 million for a stewardship endowment and $2.35 million for restoration.  This restoration work includes the decommissioning of approximately 20 miles of logging roads, and the repair of streams and wet meadows on 3,055 acres. ARC expects to begin the physical restoration work in June, 2016.  Once the restoration work is complete, they expect to add more than 3,000 of the newly acquired acres to the Granite Chief Wilderness.
The Conservation Alliance is deeply proud to have played a role in this project. Protecting 10,000 acres in such a short amount of time, in one of the most spectacular mountain ranges in the world, is a great accomplishment.