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Spring 2008

Northcoast Regional Land Trust

Coastal Barn Revisited (Pastel on canvas) Victoria Ryan

Valley View Ranch Forever Protected In This Issue

Valley View Ranch in Humboldt County, California is now forever preserved, safe-
From the Executive Director 2
guarding open space, productive working forest and grazing lands, wildlife habitat
and, a very important rural way of life. North Coast Dialogues Update 3
Here is a pastoral scene: slopes and gullies are filled with Douglas-fir trees; dense
cottonwood and willow thickets embrace the North Fork Mattole; and, on the nutri- Forward on Freshwater Farms
ent-rich floodplains, sheep, cattle, and wildlife share perennial pastures, unbroken and Reserve 3
smooth except by several parallel watercourses shaded by woody vegetation.
Valley View Ranch is visible along a four-mile stretch when traveling on the Valley View Ranch Forever
county’s North Fork Road and forms a visual, scenic backdrop to the town of Petrolia Protected 4
in southern Humboldt County. Several deep forested ravines drain water from high on Education & Outreach 6
the property (one-thousand feet above sea level)
Continued on page 4 Artist Profile 8
N O R T H C O A S T R E G I O N A L L A N D T R U S T • S P R I N G 2 0 0 8
Board of Directors
President, Blake Alexandre, Business Owner, From the
Alexandre Family EcoDairy Farms
1st Vice President, Mark Andre, Director Executive Director

of Environmental Services, City of Arcata
2nd Vice President, Ann King Smith, s with the changing of the seasons, the
Cultural Resource Specialist Northcoast Regional Land Trust has
Secretary, Yvonne Everett, Associate experienced some attrition as well as
Professor, Natural Resources Planning, renewal over the past few months. The
Humboldt State University Board, staff, and other colleagues were
Wes Anderson, Appraiser and Rancher saddened to see Erik Wilson take leave to pursue
Bill Bragg, Attorney at Law, Bragg, a position with the Jefferson Land Trust and be
Perlmen, Russ, Stenich, Rudolph & Eads closer to family in Washington State. Erik’s outgo-
Maya Conrad, Conservation Land Agent, ing personality and ability to build partnerships will be sorely missed at NRLT. He has
Coldwell Banker Realty entrusted successful projects such as the upcoming Freshwater Farms restoration to
Jack Limmer, Business Owner, Coldwell well-trained staff that worked closely with him in his remaining months.
Banker Realty In February we also said goodbye to Mary Claire Kier, a critically important person
Leland Mora, Business Owner, Humboldt who held down the office and kept things running smoothly over the past 18 months.
Auction Yard & Humboldt Grassfed Beef Although we were all disappointed to see her leave, we were also very excited for her
Fred Neighbor, Attorney at Law, private new career opportunity with the Department of Fish and Game. Mary Claire, known for
practice her healthy cynicism and wit, provided the backbone of NRLT operations and made the
Dennis Rael, Business Owner, Los Bagels office a fun place for all. She will be missed.
Company, Inc. Also, Maya Conrad, whose involvement with NRLT dates back to 2003 as the Execu-
George Yandell, North Coast Project tive Director, has transitioned her role from the Interim ED to a member of NRLT Board
Director, The Nature Conservancy of Directors.
With the passing of fall and winter, we transition into spring, a time of renewal here
David McMurray, Board Emeritus, Secre- on the North Coast as well as at NRLT. Joining our veteran staff are now three new faces
tary, California Council of Land Trusts in the office, Ryan Wells, Projects Manager; Lindsay Magnuson, Education and Outreach
Coordinator; and myself, as the new Executive Director.
Board of Advisors Ryan, previously an NRLT intern for four months, is now our Project Manager. He
is tasked with managing our Freshwater Farms Reserve Estuary Restoration Project,
James Able Laura Kadlecik regional conservation planning, and conservation easement support. Overseeing the
Dave Albee Liz Murguia Freshwater project alone involves the coordination of seven different funding sources
Jim Anderson Colleen O’Sullivan and multiple permit requirements. With Ryan’s background and expertise and with
Kim Browning Jim Petruzzi assistance from the Redwood Community Action Agency, Freshwater Farms is in good
Tom Brundage Chuck Powell hands.
Nancy Diamond Tom Rowe Lindsay Magnuson recently joined NRLT staff as our Education and Outreach Co-
Jeff Dunk Rondal Snodgrass ordinator. Lindsay, a native of Fieldbrook, comes to us from a diverse background that
Zuretti “Zuey” Bill Thompson includes working in Africa on wildlife conservation efforts to most recently teaching
Goosby Paul J. Warner biology at College of the Redwoods. She is now very excited to be back home working
Steve Hackett Arnold Whitridge on local land conservation projects with NRLT. Lindsay’s main projects include K-12
Annette Holland Katherine Ziemer education program development centered at Freshwater Farms, coordinating our North
Sandra Jerabeck Coast Dialogues effort with Shayne Green, and leading outreach events such as Canoe
the Slough and interpretive walks.
As for my own role here at NRLT, one
Staff of my main goals in the coming year is to
develop more regional efforts throughout our
Kevin McKernan, Executive Director organization’s tri-county focus area. Living
in Del Norte County for the past five years,
Shayne Green, Projects Director
after my eleven years in Humboldt County,
Lindsay Magnuson, Education &
I’ve witnessed a wide array of conservation
Outreach Coordinator
efforts and the different challenges that face
Ben Morehead, Project Manager
our communities. Likewise, Trinity County
Linda Serrano, Development Director
has its own unique set of conservation chal-
Ryan Wells, Project Manager
lenges. My hope is that through regional
coordination and dialogue, our efforts on the
North Coast can be greater than the sum of
Leslie Scopes Anderson, newsletter layout
its parts.
Clara Arndt, office assistance

Contact NRLT:
P.O. Box 398, Bayside, CA 95524
Ph: 707.822.2242; Fax: 707.822.5210 A glimpse of the Pacific Ocean from Valley
View Ranch. Photo by Erik Kingfisher
N O R T H C O A S T R E G I O N A L L A N D T R U S T • S P R I N G 2 0 0 8 3

North Coast Dialogues

Steering Committee
Blake Alexandre
Alexandre Ecodairy Farms and
Northcoast Regional Land Trust

Richard Dorn
Dorn Land Company and Humboldt
Association of Realtors

Steve Horner
Barnum Timber Company

Mark Lovelace
Healthy Humboldt Coalition and
Humboldt Watershed Council

Michael W. Miles
Pacific Lumber Company
NRLT’s new staff members: (left to right) Ryan Wells, Lindsay Magnuson and Kevin McKernan. Leland Mora
Photo by L. Serrano Humboldt Auction Yard and
Humboldt Grassfed Beef

North Coast Dialogues Update Kathy Moxon

Humboldt Area Foundation/Redwood
Late last year NRLT launched an ambitious religious, business, and Native American Rural Action Council
new multi-year initiative to engage diverse interests (among others) have been invited
stakeholders in creating a 100 year vision to be part of a group of thirty people who Gary Rynearson
for the North Coast’s landscapes, commu- will participate in this unique forum. We Green Diamond Resource Company
nities, and economies. The primary goal intend for the project to ultimately engage
of the first phase of the project is to help the broader community and to inform Jennifer Rice
our community determine the best way other planning and decision-making Redwood Community Action Agency/
to maintain productive working lands in processes affecting our region. Natural Resources Division
Humboldt County. The Steering Com-
mittee has planned a series of focused For more information on the project, Martha Spencer
conversations that will take place this please contact Lindsay Magnuson or Humboldt County Community
spring. Individuals representing agricul- Shayne Green at the NRLT office, Development Services Department/
ture, timber, environmental, recreation, 707-822-2242. Planning Division

Forward Movement on Freshwater Farms Reserve

n 2005, NRLT purchased a 54-acre The FWFR restoration project has
parcel in Freshwater, named the undergone numerous changes over the
Freshwater Farms Reserve (FWFR), years and our current design, scheduled
for the purposes of estuary/wetland to be implemented this August, contains
restoration and sustainable agricul- multiple elements that will lead to a
tural use. During the past three years, healthy, self-sustaining wetland. Removal
NRLT staff and local specialists have been of a 100-year-old tidegate, construction of
developing a project design, using the a slough channel system, revegetation of
best available science, which will provide a series of tidal hummocks (shallow hills
habitat for salmon, waterfowl, and many located within the wetland) with native
other wetland-specific plants and animals. wetland plant species, and installation
In addition, we have designated a 19-acre of in-stream fish habitat structures, will
portion of the property to be leased to a create a complex and inviting brackish
local rancher for sustainable grazing. In marsh habitat for Humboldt Bay’s native
this, we are promoting a harmonious flora and fauna. In addition to holding
relationship where habitat restoration and educational activities at FWFR, we have
agriculture can exist side by side. We ex- plans to create an interpretive trail around
pect that this project will serve as a model the wetland by the end of 2009. Wood Creek at Freshwater Farms Reserve.
for similar opportunities in the region. Photo by Erik Kingfisher
4 Valley View Ranch
What is a Conservation (Continued from cover) Northcoast Regional Land Trust is
working with state, federal, and local
Easement? into the North Fork of the Mattole River agencies, non-profit organizations, and

and protect the headwaters of tributaries individuals to work with landowners on
conservation easement is a legal that feed Mill Creek. a voluntary basis to establish perpetual
agreement between a landowner The ranch’s idyllic location, treasured protections on numerous North Coast
and an entity such as a land open space, scenic vistas, and warm, properties. Partners in the Valley View
trust that permanently protects sunny weather in the summer and early Ranch project included the California
special features of a property fall months made it especially appealing Wildlife Conservation Board, the State
such as farming, ranching and forest for conversion to vacation homes Coastal Conservancy, the federal Forest
production, open space, scenic vistas and on small, dense tracts, or “boutique” Legacy Program and U.S. Fish & Wildlife
wildlife habitat. Each conservation ease- industries such as vineyards. With a Service. These entities purchased the
ment is tailored to the specific needs and conservation easement now in place, conservation easement on the entire
desires of the landowner and the unique Valley View Ranch is protected from property in perpetuity, including the
qualities of the property. subdivision and development. subdivision and development rights
Conservation easements become part Landowners Francis and Lorana and the monetary tradeoff of imposing
of the property title. The land trust en- Sweet decided to protect their land stronger timber harvesting restrictions
sures that the terms of the easements are through a conservation easement. to protect river and wildlife habitat.
honored by present and future landown- Assisted by the Northcoast Regional Support was also provided by
ers. The property remains in private own- Land Trust, the transaction was finalized the County of Humboldt and the
ership and can be sold, leased, or passed in early April, 2008. The conservation landowners’ representatives, Steve
on to heirs. A conservation easement does easement preserves Valley View’s Hackett and Greg Hendrickson of
not grant public access unless desired by economic, cultural, natural, ecological, Agland Engineering, Inc.
the landowner. Conservation easements and open space values while maintaining Finally, and more importantly, Lorana
can provide the following benefits: In- pure aesthetic enjoyment for all. The and Francis Sweet have voluntarily
come taxes may be reduced by deducting property’s forest (704 acres) and grazing and graciously relinquished their
the value of the conservation easement lands (828 acres) are also important for rights to gain financial benefit through
as a charitable gift; estate taxes may be the county’s tax base and local economy subdivision of their property, and are
reduced by lowering the appraised value by producing goods for use in the North donating a significant portion of the
of taxable land assets; property taxes may Coast region. appraised conservation easement value.
be reduced. In some cases conservation Valley View Ranch boasts a plethora The Sweets have also contributed a
easements are purchased by land trusts of wildlife, and their habitats are now stewardship endowment so that the
and public agencies to ensure long-term permanently protected. The North Fork Northcoast Regional Land Trust can
public benefits and funds needed by land- Mattole River and Mill Creek harbor conduct long-term monitoring of the
owners for their economic stabilization native salmonid species, including Coho, property, ensuring adherence to the
and security. steelhead and cutthroat trout, and winter easement’s terms.
Chinook, which spawn and rear in these The Six Rivers to the Sea Initiative
Please visit watersheds.Other state or federally listed has now permanently protected more
easements/guide or call the NRLT office species also live here, including northern than 11,000 acres on four ranches:
707/822.2242 for more information on spotted owls, golden eagles, red and Howe Creek in 2002; Iaqua Ranch and
conservation easements. yellow-legged frogs, and red tree voles. Price Creek Ranches in 2006; and now
Mountain lion, black bear, coyote, and in 2008, Valley View Ranch. NRLT and
Valley View Ranch photos by Erik Kingfisher blacktail deer also inhabit the property. partners seek to conserve approximately
Completion of the Valley View Ranch 30,000 acres through Six Rivers to the
project is another step forward in the Sea by 2010 (see map). We invite every
conservation of contiguous private lands reader to become an active participant in
located in the productive belt of working this ambitious endeavor!
agricultural and forest lands between
the Six Rivers National Forest and
the Pacific Ocean – an area under
imminent threat of development.
Aptly named the Six Rivers to the
Sea Program, this large-scale land
conservation initiative facilitates
the development of conservation
easements to protect and preserve
the scenic and natural resources of
Humboldt, Trinity and Del Norte
counties while maintaining the
region’s culture and tradition of
working, sustainable lands.
Recognizing the importance
of these ranches to fish, wildlife,
and productive resources, the
Forever Protected 5

Valley View Ranch

Landowners Lorana
and Francis Sweet
As Francis puts it, “Ranching and the land
has been my way of life, it’s what I believe
in. I have been ranching on a small scale
my whole life, and I actually worked on
this property as a young man when it was
rented to the Connick Livestock Com-
pany. At that time [Valley View Ranch]
belonged to my aunt, Bertha Russ, who
established the Bertha Russ Lytel Founda-
tion and conserved all that good timber-
land along the Wildcat and down to Fern-
dale. Then the property became available
to me and I jumped at the opportunity
because it was what I wanted all my life.
I feel like I have an obligation to this land
and to her (Aunt Bertha) for giving me
the chance. The main reason for doing a
conservation easement is to keep the land
intact as a working ranch and forest and
to ensure my family unit.”
If Lorana could live or work on a
ranch anywhere in the world, she would
choose Valley View. “Living in the Petrolia
area was always a dream. Francis worked
here when he was 17 years old. The ranch
was left to him by his Great Aunt. He
really wants it to stay intact – to respect
what her wishes would have been too.”
Lorana and Francis Sweet’s family
has been on the Valley View Ranch since
1940. Before that the Russ Family, of
whom Francis is related through mar-
riage, owned the land since 1888.
Despite financial hardships over the
years, the couple is committed to the con-
servation and preservation of their land
and have diligently avoided subdividing
or changing the historic (agricultural and
forestry) uses of the property.
6 N O R T H C O A S T R E G I O N A L L A N D T R U S T • S P R I N G 2 0 0 8

Education & Outreach

Please consider

he Northcoast Regional Land
Trust’s “Land Use and Environ- becoming a business
ment Seminar” is well underway. partner with the
This education and outreach Northcoast Regional
program includes interpretive
activities for the public as well as a Land Trust.
hands-on science program for high school
students at our Freshwater Farms
Reserve. NRLT has partnered with
Shannon Morago at Six Rivers Charter As an NRLT business partner, you
School to offer a field-based educational Paddling Humboldt Bay. Photo by Hawk Martin join select a group of businesses
program to 10th grade biology students. working for healthy and sustainable
Our goal is to provide students with an The Northcoast Regional Land Trust is landscapes and communities on the
opportunity to actively participate in a committed to providing the public with North Coast.
restoration project in their own back- opportunities to experience our unique
yard. Students will participate in actual and threatened tidal wetlands. These eco- Special thanks to the following,
data collection regarding the flora, fauna, systems are among the most productive current business partners:
hydrology and soils of Freshwater Farms and biologically diverse on the planet and
Reserve. Data collected by students this are disappearing at an alarming rate. We Agland Engineering, Inc.
May will provide an exciting comparison offer interpretive walks and Alexandre Family EcoDairy Farms
to data collected next year by the same Canoe-the-Slough kayaking trips on Brooks Appraisal Service
students when they are enrolled in chem- Freshwater Slough and Humboldt Bay. Thomas Brundage, Registered
istry. Our first event this year was a moonlight Geologist
Students will be involved over multiple paddle on March 21st through Eureka Change Mediation
years and will have the unique experi- and Freshwater Sloughs. We are planning Coldwell Banker Sellers / Cutten
ence of observing the naturalization of the other events this spring. If you’d like to Realty
Freshwater Farms site after the restora- get out and enjoy our tidal wetlands while Charlie Tripodi & Maya Conrad
tion plan has been implemented in late learning about the natural history of the Jack & Rita Limmer
2008. We hope to expand our educational bay, please join us on an interpretive walk Mock Wahlund
program in 2009 to include other schools, or canoe trip. Hope to see you there! Curley’s Grill
a broader age range of students and Cypress Grove Chevre, Inc.
additional programs such as water quality For questions about education and out- Dorn & Company
testing and salmonid monitoring in Fresh- reach activities, please contact Lindsay Eel Canyon Farms
water and Wood Creek. Magnuson at Emerald City Laundry Company
First American Title Company
HumBoats Kayak Adventures
The mixed pasture and forest land of Valley View Ranch. Photo by Erik Kingfisher Humboldt Creamery Association
Humboldt Grassfed Beef
Humboldt Land Title Company
Sue Bosch
Susan Galliani
Hunt Company Real Estate
Kier Associates
Law Office of Catherine M. Koshkin
Los Bagels
McClelland Consulting
North Coast Cleaning Services Inc.
North Coast Cooperative
Oscar Larson & Associates
Pacific Gas & Electric
Redwood Capital Bank
Redwood Roots Farm
Responsive Software
Riverbar Farm
Robert Goodman Wines
Stokes, Steeves, Rowe & Hamer
Sun Valley Group
Surfbear Outfitters
Tofu Shop Specialty Foods
White Tree Design
Wildberries Market Place
N O R T H C O A S T R E G I O N A L L A N D T R U S T • S P R I N G 2 0 0 8

Thank you NRLT Members and Supporters!

NRLT thanks all of its supporters from September 1, 2007 through April 1, 2008.

Agencies and Foundations Tom Lisle & Lori Dengler Elias Elias
Anonymous (2) Shayne Green David & Patricia Platt Epstein
Andrus Family Fund Danny Hagans Gary & Janis Friedrichsen
CA Coastal Conservancy Dick Hackett Bruce & Billie Gordon
CA Department of Fish & Game Judith Hinman Dan & Donna Hauser
Cal Fire Tom Rowe & Emily Stokes Rowe Sandra Healy
CA Wildlife Conservation Board Jeff & Edith Schwartz David Hitchcock
Clarence E. Heller Foundation Dave Imper
Columbia Foundation Madrone ($100-$249) Claudia Israel
County of Humboldt Anonymous (2) Ron & Melanie Kuhnel
Humboldt Area Foundation Glenn Berry Jerome & Nancy Lengyel
Mel & Grace McLean Foundation Thomas Brundage & Diane DeFord Byrd Lochtie
National Fish & Wildlife Federation Gail Coonen Judy & John Longshore
Natural Resources Conservation Service Joan Early Lois Mellert
NOAA Fisheries Michele Fell Thomas & Doris Montgomery
Norcross Wildlife Foundation, Inc. Susan Frances Susan Moskaly
The Nature Conservancy Julie Fulkerson & Lynn Evans Gwen Neu
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Don & Sylvia Garlick Jennifer Rice
U.S. Forest Service Fred Hummel Bob Sizoo & Sue Turner
Will J. Reid Foundation Jack & Peggy Irvine Irith Shalmony
Jack & Rita Limmer Rondal Snodgrass
Redwood ($1,000 +) Sam & Kathleen Manaktala Mark & Sandi Sommer
Blake & Stephanie Alexandre Robert & Mavis McKelvey Richard & Phyllis Stanewick
Wes & Sue Anderson Kevin McKernan Roger Sternberg
Barbara Barratt Kit Mann & Rebecca Zettler Scott Sway
Francis & Carole Carrington Lisa Miller & Bryan Gaynor Robie Tenorio & Gil Gregori
Doug & Ann King Smith Ben & Ananda Morehead Vicky Turner & Rudy Ramp
Ronald & Donna Thompson Archie Mossman Don & Andrea Tuttle
George Yandell Felicia Oldfather Anne & Roger Weiss
Janice Parakilas & Roy Baker Ellen Weiss & David Copple
Claire & Gene Perricelli Kristi Wrigley
Big Leaf Maple Mark Andre & Nancy Rehg
($500-$999) Gordon & Lynn Skaggs To make your valued donation to the
Anonymous (1) Martha Ann Spencer Northcoast Regional Land Trust, please
Joan Berman Francis & Lorana Sweet use the enclosed remittance envelope.
Maya Conrad & Charlie Tripodi Ted & Josephine Trichilo
Renee Crowley Marlena & Moises Vega The Northcoast Regional Land Trust
Annette & Greg Holland is a tax-exempt, nonprofit, 501(c)(3)
David & Madeline McMurray Manzanita (Up to $99) organization listed with the Inter-
Lee & Eileen Mora Anonymous (6) nal Revenue Service under EIN
Fred & Joyce Neighbor Thomas & Catherine Allen #68-0456290. All donations are tax
Margaret Nulsen & Chris Frolking Illijana Asara & Jim Vandegriff deductible.
Dennis Rael & Carol Falkenthal Mary-Jane Ashton
Tempra Board
Black Oak ($250-$499) Sally and Richard Botzler
Anonymous (3) Lucinda Bradshaw
Dave Albee Peter Burgess
Harry Blumenthal & Scott Mitchell John Calkins
Bill Bragg & Lee Roscoe-Bragg Russ Conrad
Kim & Shirley Browning Sarah Eeles
Northcoast Regional Land Trust
P.O. Box 398
Bayside, CA 95524

Let NRLT Work for You!

If you own land that you would like to protect, learn
more about the options available to you.

• Do you want certain natural features of your property to

be protected into the future yet keep private ownership
of your land?
• Would you like to protect your property from being
converted to non-traditional uses?
• Are estate taxes a threat to keeping your farm, forest,
or ranch in the family when you pass on?
• Could you benefit from significant income and estate tax
• Do you want to protect the natural or ecological benefits
your land provides?
• Do you want the scenic and historic values of your land Cover Art Victoria Ryan
to remain intact for future generations to enjoy?
A native Californian, Victoria Ryan has called Humboldt County
If you answered yes to any or all of these questions, a con- her home since 2002. A professional fine artist for 25 years,
servation easement may be right for you. Please give us a Victoria works primarily in soft pastel to create vivid, dreamlike
call 707.822.2242 and we can provide more information landscapes of the local terrain and from her travels. Layers of
and guidance; you can also browse our website at rich pigmented color are applied to various substrates to create eloquent and vibrant perspectives. Her work can be found
in private, corporate and public collections world wide and can
be viewed at A series of new original
NRLT Mission: pastel landscapes will be on view at Humboldt Baykeeper, 217
The Northcoast Regional Land Trust is dedicated to the E St., Eureka, CA, during the months of April and May, 2008.
protection and enhancement of farms, forests, range- The cover painting, “Coastal Barn Revisited”, an original pastel,
lands, and wild areas in perpetuity. Our vision for the is inspired from Southport Landing, a previously busy port on
future includes vibrant communities, sustainable econo- Humboldt Bay in the Tablebluff area near Loleta. It now houses
mies and healthy landscapes. an historic bed and breakfast inn.