Thanks to Wild Cherry Canyon supporters
May 16, 2013
Greetings, friends and long-time supporters of Wild Cherry Canyon.
As you’ve probably heard, plans to add the 2400-acre coastal Wild Cherry Canyon property to Montana de Oro State Park have fallen through.
It’s been a long road, with a hard ending. But the bottom line is that the leaseholders (who own the rights to use the land for the next 150 or so years) have not extended the option to purchase, and thus we are not able to buy the property interests.
Nor can we, today, open up a 20-mile extension of the California Coastal Trail through the Irish Hills. I’m so sorry.
I’m writing to you today to say thank you for all your hopeful efforts. Thank you for helping fund the management endowment and purchase, and for sponsoring the project, writing letters on its behalf, and donating your precious time to assist State Parks had it been able to acquire this scenic land. We are so grateful.
It is my sincere hope that the story of Wild Cherry Canyon is not at its end.
Recently, the leaseholders have made public their interest in developing the land. Perhaps they will change their mind and return for another attempt at conservation, be it with State Parks or another entity. Or, perhaps, mitigation for a development might ultimately lead to public access of some sort; time will tell.
But as stated by The Tribune, “We have a rare opportunity to preserve an undeveloped stretch of California coastline.” We urge you to keep an eye on Wild Cherry Canyon and make sure that any decisions affecting the land are consistent with the law, the county’s land use principles, and the needs of the community.
Finally, with WCC on (hopefully temporary) hiatus, I will now be supporting local conservation efforts through the Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo County. I would like to provide this long-standing conservation organization with the contact information I’ve used for all of you in the Wild Cherry Canyon effort. If that’s a problem – please let me know and I will be sure to redact your name from our list. If you allow us to keep your information, you’ll be hearing from me or the Land Conservancy from time to time regarding other, awe-inspiring conservation opportunities.
The outcome of WCC has been very disappointing; but your continued support of local conservation may be the cloud’s silver lining, that continues to inspire.
With sincere gratitude for your years of support, and heartfelt regret for not being able to make WCC a State Parks reality,
Kara Woodruff Blakeslee is a volunteer with Friends of Wild Cherry Canyon and a longtime advocate of conservation efforts.
P.S.S. Know someone who wants to join our local conservation efforts? If so, please provide the contact information and we’ll keep them informed, too!