Since 2001, The Wildlands Conservancy has continued to advocate for the establishment of permanent conservation of approximately 320,000 acres of magnificent land owned by the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) in the Owens Valley.
Preservation of the LADWP lands in perpetuity would protect an entire region of eastern California, including the 100-mile-long Owens Valley which lies between the Sierra Nevada and the Inyo and White Mountains. The terrain varies from the sage-covered valley with volcanic tablelands to mountain meadows and forests, including over 20,000 acres of lakes and wetlands.
The land is a recreation and vacation paradise for camping, sightseeing, hiking, picnicking, fishing, hunting, boating and a respite from urban life. Surrounded by LADWP lands, the small, pleasant communities of Big Pine, Independence, Lone Pine, Bishop and Lee Vining cater to tourism along Highway 395. Driving through the valley, one imagines the way California looked 100 years ago while looking at the dramatic views that delighted John Muir and Ansel Adams. With the rapid increase in tourism and significant loss of California wildlands due to population growth, it is now crucial to protect the valley's future.