If you look at a map of the Tahoe National Forest, you’ll notice that it looks like a “checkerboard” of public and private property. This unusual pattern has its roots in 19th-century federal land policy and the construction of the Union Pacific Railroad north of Lake Tahoe. The resulting “patchwork quilt” of public and private lands can create challenges for land management and public recreation. By permanently protecting private lands within the “checkerboard” and transferring them to the USFS, we can help expand the Tahoe National Forest and fill in the gaps.
“This project was especially cool because it's a great model — we work with the landowner to secure a complex land deal, then transfer it to public ownership,” says Placer Land Trust Conservation Director Lynnette Batt. “It adds more land to the Tahoe National Forest, which is a popular and important landscape in the Sierra. And importantly, selling land to the USFS allows us to cover our costs, and to ‘pay it forward’ to our future land protection projects. We are grateful to the USFS for being great partners.”
To learn more about Southern Cross Preserve and this transfer project with USFS, CLICK HERE.