On Dec. 6, 2013, Mendocino Land Trust purchased a beautiful 73-acre property south of Point Arena from the California Institute of Environmental Studies (CIES). It was named “Pelican Bluffs” in honor of the important work conducted by Frank Gress of CIES documenting eggshell thinning and reproductive failure of California brown pelicans. Through the years, his research and conservation efforts were instrumental to the recovery of California brown pelican populations in the Channel Islands, and we are proud to honor that environmental achievement with our preserve.
The California State Coastal Conservancy funded this purchase, which protects endangered species habitat and supports the construction of a new segment of the California Coastal Trail. This stunning preserve offers habitat for a federally-listed endangered species, the Point Arena Mountain Beaver.
We are very excited about our ownership of the property. In 2017 work began on building a new public trail, thanks to funding from the Coastal Conservancy. The 2.2 mile trail guides visitors from the parking lot to a lush grassy field surrounded by trees, a perfect spot for a picnic. From there, the path is enveloped by deep verdant Bishop pine forest before revealing the dramatic coastal landscape. The trail continues over a small bridge and down toward the bluff edge, with dramatic sheer, white cliffs plunging to the sea below. This is a great spot to see the peregrine falcons that nest nearby. From there the trail loops back, this time through the wide coastal prairie, before returning to the parking lot.