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Sonoma Land Trust Completes Purchase of Land With Highest Peak on Sonoma Coast

Pole Mountain area. Photo by Stephen Joseph Photography/Courtesy of Sonoma Land Trust on Facebook.
Pole Mountain area. Photo by Stephen Joseph Photography/Courtesy of Sonoma Land Trust on Facebook.
Sonoma Land Trust has completed the $2.35 million purchase of Pole Mountain Preserve, which includes the highest peak along the Sonoma Coast.

The Preserve's 238 acres connects the Jenner Headlands and the Sonoma Land Trust's Little Black Mountain Preserve near Cazadero.

An historic and still active fire lookout tower is located on 2,204-foot Pole Mountain, Sonoma Land Trust's director of communications Sheri Cardo said.

The Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District contributed $1 million toward the purchase, the California Wildlife Conservation Board gave $650,000 and the California Coastal Conservancy and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation each gave $350,000.

The purchase will ensure the wild and scenic landscape that affords unobstructed, 360-degree views of Sonoma County will remain an undeveloped refuge for wildlife and hikers, Cardo said.

"We also received overwhelming support from individual donors who recognized the critical need for conserving Pole Mountain in all its quiet grandeur so that it will forever remain undisturbed and natural," said Amy Chestnut, Sonoma Land Trust's acquisitions director.

Pole Mountain connects more than 6,300 acres of habitat for deer, bobcat, badger, mountain lion, golden eagles and bird species, Cardo said. The site includes oak savannah, open grasslands, pockets of coniferous forest and ancient madrone.

The Pole Mountain Fire Lookout organization staffs the two-story lookout during fire season. Pole Mountain will be readily available to hikers once construction of a trailhead on Jenner Headlands is completed on Highway 1 north of Jenner, Cardo said.

Until then, Sonoma Land Trust plans guided hikes on Pole Mountain on Sept. 14 and 28 and Oct. 12 and 26. Registration is required.

--Bay City News

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