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Last week, the Scotts Valley City Council approved the Land Trust’s management plan for the Glenwood Open Space Preserve – a big step toward opening this 170-acre City-owned property to public access. (Read the management plan.) It’s been a long time coming. Council member Stephany Aguilar said the preserve would be “a gem of Scotts Valley.” Council member Jim Reed said he “couldn’t wait for it to open.”

He won’t have to wait long. The first trails will be built on the Glenwood Preserve in Scotts Valley this winter and open in the spring– with more on the way. The first couple of miles of trails will be on the western side of the preserve, above Scotts Valley High. The Land Trust will work with Mountain Bikers of Santa Cruz and parents and students at the school to build the trails up the steep hills above the high school.

Trails on the eastern side of the preserve will be built after a City-run public process. The trails on that side must avoid sensitive habitat that is the home to a number of listed species. Most of the funding that protected the property from development (145 homes were planned and scaled back to 48 clustered homes) is tied to the protection of the Ohlone Tiger Beetle and other species. (Read our press release.)

The Land Trust holds the easement protecting these species and will build the trails around the sensitive areas.

It’s another example of how we work with partners to protect our county. We’re partnering with POST, Save the Redwoods, and Sempervirens on building trails at San Vicente Redwoods. We’re working with Caltrans to get a wildlife tunnel built under Highway 17. And we’re partners with RTC on building the Rail Trail.

Partnerships take time, but they’re how you get big things done – and we want to get big things done! You can help us get this and other big things done by making a donation today – two of your board members will DOUBLE your gift.

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Stephen Slade is the Executive Director at Land Trust of Santa Cruz County. He has more than 40 years non-profit experience in fundraising, communications, and management – and a deep passion for the lands that make Santa Cruz special. Find out more about Stephen Slade...
This Post Has 4 Comments
  1. I have been a financial supporter of this organization for 25 years. I am disappointed in the fact that equestrain access and use has not been addressed in many of the properties protected. I have also worked with MBoSC in fund raising efforts for trail building and maintenance. Multi use trails need to be addressed. That means staging areas for horses and trails set as multi-use, not one specific user. I appreciate the fund raising and trail building MBoSC offers the community but there is a funding constituent of LTSCC which is not being addressed.

    1. Hi Pamela, thank you for your ongoing support. It means a lot to us. We proudly support equestrian access where it 1) doesn’t conflict with our conservation efforts and where it 2) won’t conflict with other uses of the property. We will be providing equestrian access at San Vicente Redwoods – more than 15 miles of it, and staging areas to boot. At Glenwood Preserve, however, there are too many conflicting uses on the property to accommodate horses. On the West Preserve, our priority is to provide access for the nearby schools and neighbors and it’s considered too steep and the trails too narrow to provide access to equestrians (and not have it conflict with other users). On the East Preserve, there’s cattle grazing and we’re working to protect many federally threatened or endangered species. So sorry it won’t work out in this case, and thank you again for your support.

    1. Hi, Patty. Yes! You will be able to walk your dog on the West Preserve (where we’re building trails this winter). Dog-walking will not be allowed on the East Preserve because it’s not terribly compatible with cattle grazing, nor with the protection of several federally endangered and protected species, including the Ohlone Tiger Beetle.

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