Bear Yuba Land Trust Conservation Easements
Adam Ryan Wildlife Preserve
Feld Family Easement
Hannan Wildlife Preserve
Hart Family Pitcher Plant Fin
Peaceful Valley Ranch
Peardale Bird Sanctuary
Wild Rock Ranch
Wolf Creek at North Star
ADAM RYAN WILDLIFE PRESERVE
Conservation Easement Established 1999 41 Acres
The Adam Ryan Wildlife Preserve consists of nearly 41 acres of meadow and forest land, along Dog Bar Road and Alta Sierra Drive, not far from Mathis Pond. This is a generous gift from Alta Brewer and her husband Alan Thiesen and is named after Alta and Alan's young son.
The land was zoned for two condominiums per acre as well as commercial development in this rapidly developing area. Instead the preserve provides a low-impact trail, natural habitat for area wildlife, and a beautiful vista for everyone to enjoy– forever.
Conservation Easement Established 1995 10 Acres
In March 1995 the Land Trust secured its second wildlife habitat conservation easement. The site is just over the border in Yuba County. The donors wish to remain anonymous, but their beautiful 10-acre gift helps form an important link to keep important high-country migratory deer trails open. When heavy winter snows cover deer forage, the herds migrate to lower elevations in search of food. As more large tracts of land are developed and fenced, many of these routes are cut off.
Fish and Game biologist for Yuba and Sutter counties, Dale Whitmore, helped prepare the supporting wildlife reports needed to secure this conservation easement. The easement will also help protect a historic location - the site of an old stagecoach stop. The property is adjacent to a land-locked Bureau of Land Management parcel.
Conservation EasementEstablished 1999 3.47 Acres
At the time that the Adam Ryan Preserve was established, neighboring landowners Mr. and Mrs. Donald Dittemore placed a conservation agreement on a portion of their property adjacent to the preserve. The agreement area provides wildlife habitat as well as a personal buffer to the canal and trails on the Brewer’s Adam Ryan Preserve property.
FELD FAMILY EASEMENT
Conservation Easements Established 2001 39 Acres
The Feld Family easements represent three contiguous parcels with a particularly pristine section of Dry Creek running through them. In response to our outreach to landowners along the creek, the Felds not only agreed to protect the 300-foot corridor we requested, but also extended the conservation easement protection to cover nearly all of their holdings.
Located in the southwestern part of the county, this site is several parcels downstream from the Hannan Wildlife Preserve, and helps to build on BYLT's long-term goal of protecting this important corridor for a wildlife migratory corridor.
The Feld's parcels are heavily forested, with good tree canopy over the creek. Wildlife abounds in the area, including a beaver pond just upstream from one of their parcels.
Conservation Easement Established 2007 158 Acres
Holger and Tacy Hahn donated a conservation easement on 128 acres along Deer Creek. The property is situated within the lower elevations of the mixed conifer belt and the upper elevations of the blue oak belt. Consequently, it includes vegetation and habitat types characteristic of both.
In addition, the property includes 3,500 linear feet of riparian habitat along Deer Creek, a perennial stream that originates above Nevada City, flows into Lake Wildwood and eventually to the Yuba River. The property is adjacent to large agricultural (primarily rangeland) parcels on the east and to smaller rural-residential parcels on the remaining three sides.
HANNAN WILDLIFE PRESERVE
Conservation Easement Established 1999 41+ Acres
Robert and Doris Hannan moved to their property in southwestern Nevada County in the 1970's. Thought they subdivided their land into four parcels over the years, they fell in love with the land in its natural state, and started to explore the idea of keeping the land as it is.
The Hannan's property was an identified conservation priority area in the Important Natural Communities (INCA) of Nevada County Report, with a quarter mile of pristine Dry Creek running through it.
Their section of Dry Creek contains gentle pools, falls, massive boulders and bedrock outcrops. The oak woodlands, mixed conifer forest and meadow areas contain native grasslands, wildflowers and provide excellent animal habitat. The Hannans have seen otters and beavers in the creek. Some of the rock outcrops near the creek have bedrock milling cups used by the Maidu people.
This property is not open to the public, but will be a safe haven for wildlife forever.
HART FAMILY PITCHER PLANT FIN
Conservation Easement Established 1998 10 Acres
Not all protected plants and animals are warm and fuzzy. The Land Trust recorded an easement on 6 acres of bog, with another four acres of buffer around the periphery, near Grouse Ridge, all to protect a rare plant that smells like dead meat and eats bugs. This particular green-colored, insect-eating plant, Darlingtonia californica, needs very special habitat to survive and represents the southern-most range of this species.
The owner of the site very patiently worked with the Land Trust to allow time to finalize all the legalities and secure the funding needed to protect this site. This was the first lands project with the (NCCA) Nevada County Conservation Alliance to utilize The Nature Conservancy matching grant funding.
PEACEFUL VALLEY RANCH
Conservation Easement Established 2003 99 Acres
Al and Lynne Dover have donated two conservation easements totaling 99 acres on their Deer Creek property. Both conservation easements protect blue oak woodlands, foothill grasslands and mixed conifer forests. The property offers an approximate half-mile corridor along Deer Creek for wildlife habitat and migration. The proximity to water, the extensive cover, and diverse shrubs and trees makes this very valuable habitat.
The Dovers purchased the ranch in the late 1960s from the Brown family, who were seeking a party who would keep the land intact. It was only natural for the the Dovers to preserve the open space, integrity and purpose of their property using a multi-phase conservation easement.
PEARDALE BIRD SANCTUARY
Conservation Easement Established 1998 27 Acres
The 27-acre parcel, located in the Peardale area, contains a rich mixture of riparian and upland forest habitats, including seasonal wetlands, grasslands, a perennial stream, large pond, wildflower meadows and both hardwood and mixed conifer forests.
With Peardale beginning to experience more growth, many of the properties surrounding this sanctuary have been subdivided, resulting in fragmented habitat and displaced wildlife. Much of the wildlife has found refuge on these 27 acres, making this parcel an especially important one to protect from future subdivision.
The property is also home to an astounding number of plant and animal species. More than 130 different bird species have been reported over the years, including red-tailed hawk, western blue bird, red shafted flicker, California quail, Cooper Hawk, Great Horned Owl, water ouzel, Black-headed grosbeak, great blue heron, and more.
Conservation Easement Established 1994 160 Acres
When you take North Bloomfield Road north of Nevada City toward the South Yuba River, you might get a glimpse of Round Mountain from across the broad gentle basin of Rock Creek. Its rounded ridge is a local landmark on the south side of the river canyon just downstream from Edwards Crossing.
Janaia Donaldson and Robin Mallgren acquired four 40-acre pacels over a five year period. Completed in late 1994, Round Mountain East became the first conservation easement project for the Land Trust.
The easement, designed to protect scenic and wildlife values, prohibits development such as house building, subdividing, ranching, waste dumping and similar activities. The land is situated completely within the critical winter range for the Nevada City deer herd.
The long-range goal of the easement is to create and maintain a healthy, natural forest ecosystem with an emphasis on enhancing wildlife habitat.
WILD ROCK RANCH
Conservation Easement Established 2000 495 Acres
The Wild Rock Ranch Open Space Conservation Easement became a reality at the end of December 2000. A gift of the Paine Family, the 495-acre easement is designed to keep the property in productive open space as a working ranch. Unlike our park and trail easements, Wild Rock is not open to the public.
The cattle ranch is considered a "working landscape", meaning that in addition to very scenic vistas, it provides for jobs and (food) production. The owners have provided for a future option of building a home, in a specified area, on the range land.
The hundreds of acres of well-managed pastures provide an extra bonus for area wildlife. The property contains several large ponds, riparian corridors and great areas of oak woodlands.
WOLF CREEK AT NORTH STAR
Conservation Easement Established 2004 15 Acres
The Wolf Creek easement near the North Star Historic District is on nicely wooded land that runs between Allison Ranch Road and Wolf Creek. The easement provides key connectivity for a major trail link to the North Star Mining Museum and the City of Grass Valley.
The future trail on the property will be known as the Larimer Trail. The area is within the City of Grass Valley's Recreational Trails Plan, and will later tie into the peripheral trails around the North Star property.