Conservation Project Profile: Big Hot Springs Ranch

In this new blog feature we will profile a selection of our conservation projects for our members and interested readers.

Big Hot Springs Conservation Easement

This 75-acre easement in the Bridgeport Valley was donated to ESLT in December 2005 and protects wildlife habitat and scenic views from adjacent U.S. Highway 395 (in fact many of you have likely driven past this property) and nearby BLM public lands.

The property sits to the east of Hwy 395 along the edge of the valley at approximately 6,500 feet and includes pinyon-juniper woodlands, sagebrush-bitterbrush scrub, wet and dry meadows. These lands provide important habitat for the Mono Lake mule deer herd, birds, and other wildlife such as coyote, jackrabbit, rattlesnake, ground squirrel, and cottontail rabbit. The property is adjacent to the boundary of the Audubon California designated Bridgeport Valley Important Bird Area (IBA).

The Sierra Nevada forms a dramatic background to the south, west, and north of the property with the working landscape of the Bridgeport Valley in the foreground  including grassy meadows and flowing creeks in summer, and a wide snowy expanse in winter. The Bodie Hills rise in elevation to the east of the property. Big Hot Springs Canyon drains from the Bodie Hills directly to the east, forming associated alkali meadows located on the easement land and to the east.

If you are interested in learning more about this conservation project, please join us for the upcoming ESLT Moonlight Ski Tour which will be held on this scenic property and adjacent lands.

Aaron

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