October MLT Monthly
This month, we have much to celebrate at the Mendocino Land Trust, including a completed conservation easement in Albion that is particularly special to us and an amazing turnout for September's Coastal Cleanup Day. This year marks our organization's 45th birthday. We wish we could have a big, public celebration, but with the pandemic continuing, now is not the time. We will look forward to a grand celebration for MLT's 50th anniversary in 2026. And until then, we will continue working hard to conserve the land while there is still time.
Guardian Trees Forever Protected
The Surprising Legacy of an Albion Beat Poet
Renowned Beat poet ruth weiss spent more than 40 years of her life writing, hosting gatherings of artists, and communing with the forest at her home on Albion Ridge. The late ruth weiss preferred her name to be written in lower case. We honor that preference here. 

During the final weeks before ruth passed in July 2020, she was focused on ensuring that the trees on her property were forever protected. The five-acre parcel was bequeathed to the Mendocino Land Trust with the condition that the trees be protected forever and the land conserved. 
The Mendocino Land Trust is deeply appreciative of this gift and thrilled to be able to make ruth’s final wishes a reality. Conservation is precisely what we do, but the legal ins-and-outs of a conservation easement take time. We are happy to announce that as of August 23, 2021, the trees on the Weiss property are protected in perpetuity through a conservation easement granted to the Land Trust.

Read more on MLT's website
Coastal Cleanup Day is a Wet Success!
Rain does not deter volunteers committed to keeping oceans and waterways trash-free
Photo by Joe Seta of the North Coast Brewing Company.
Mendocino County makes a huge effort to celebrate Coastal Cleanup Day. This year, there were 35 coastal cleanup sites in Mendocino County. Mendocino Land Trust has served as the countywide coordinator for this event since 2002. Various organizations and individuals host 17 sites on the coast and the Mendocino County Resource Conservation District organizes Ukiah area volunteers to do cleanups at 15 sites along the Russian River. As of October 4, data from site captains indicate that countywide, 287 volunteers removed 3,667 POUNDS of trash/recyclables from Mendocino County beaches, creeks and rivers! 
Mendocino Land Trust Conservation Manager Nicolet Houtz says that in the eight years she has participated in Coastal Cleanup Day she has never been so wet and muddy -- or had such an enthusiastic group of volunteers. The 20 or so volunteers that dedicated the rainy morning of September 18 to picking up trash at Hare Creek Preserve included several members of the Rotary Club of Fort Bragg and three of their young counterparts from the Fort Bragg High School Interact Club. A handful of retired folks and a mom and two kids rounded out the hard-working crew that removed 1,389 pounds of trash from the area between the Hare Creek Bridge and Babcock Beach.

See lots of photos and the full Coastal Cleanup Day report on MLT's website
Treasures in the Trash
Which is the most unusual item?
A fun tradition during Coastal Cleanup Day is a friendly competition to see who will find the most unusual, notable, or surprising item. This year's top contenders included a six-foot metal support pole in the sand on Virgin Creek Beach, a polar bear snow globe AND a "gender reveal" popper at Hare Creek Beach and a coffee maker at Point Arena Cove. Not pictured is a full size BBQ that the Mendocino County Resource Conservation District crew pulled out of the Russian River! Which gets your vote for most unusual item?

Cast your vote on our Instagram or Facebook post!
Meet the MLT Team
Welcome Emily Griffen!
After a career as a lawyer, a Mendocino Coast local has changed paths to work towards land conservation in her home community. This September, Emily Griffen joined the Mendocino Land Trust as our new Administrative Coordinator. 
Emily grew up in Fort Bragg and Mendocino. She earned her college degree from Amherst College in Massachusetts, and later completed a law degree at UC Berkeley School of Law. Emily moved back to the Mendocino Coast with her family in 2011. Prior to joining MLT, she spent two decades as a corporate lawyer based in San Francisco. She is excited to help conserve the beautiful natural places where she grew up, and preserve them for generations to come.
Please join us in giving a warm welcome to Emily!
Read more about Emily on our website
Planning for the Future
MLT Staff and Board Focus on Strategic Planning
Thank you to all who completed our community surveys earlier this year. This month, MLT Staff and Board will be meeting with the Conservation Consulting Group to draft a new strategic plan to guide our work over the next three years. The framework for this plan will rely on your feedback as well as the opinions of stakeholders, donors, and board members. We will be excited to share our plans as they develop. Careful planning will allow us to make best use of limited resources to ensure a bright future for conservation in Mendocino County.

Photo: MLT staff outside our office at 215 Main Street in Fort Bragg. If you missed the news about our move you can read about it on our website.
October Volunteer Schedule
Help needed to help maintain MLT gems=====
We are heading into the rainy season. Our general policy is that "nasty weather" cancels our work days. That means if it is lightly sprinkling we'll dress for the weather and give it a go, but if it is dumping buckets we will cancel. If the weather looks questionable, feel free to email info@mendocinolandtrust and inquire if the volunteer day is go or no-go.

Hare Creek Beach, Fort Bragg
Saturday, October 9 9:30 am - 12 pm
Tools will be provided. Activities will include pruning along the trail and removal of invasive blackberry and ivy. Dress to get dirty. Bring gloves and water. We will meet at the south end of the Community College Coast Center parking lot at 9:30 am. If you come late wander across the field and down the trail along the creek and you'll find us!

Thursday, October 14 10 am - 12 pm
Dress to get dirty. Bring gloves and water. Tools will be provided. Activities will include hacking out invasive thistle and taking in the gorgeous views.

Ten Mile Stewards at Old Smith Ranch
Saturday, October 16 9 am - 11 am
Note the earlier than usual start time! Dress to get dirty. Bring gloves and water. Tools will be provided. Activities will include pruning along trail and removal of invasive pampas grass.
This Month's Featured Adventure!
Pelican Bluffs
Each month we share an adventure recommendation from MLT staff. This month's is written by MLT's Conservation Manager Nicolet Houtz:

While all of MLT’s preserves and coastal trails hold a special place in my heart, there is one in particular that stands out as my favorite – Pelican Bluffs. Pelican Bluffs and I joined the Mendocino Land Trust family around the same time at the end of 2013, and documenting the condition of the property was one of my very first projects. I couldn’t believe how incredibly lucky I was to be chosen to do this work. There is beauty everywhere you turn here - towering sandstone bluffs, a bishop pine forest perched on a hill overlooking coastal prairie, waves of golden grass blowing in the wind, and of course, grand sweeping views of the ocean. You could drop your camera while hiking and still probably end up with a stunning photo of the ocean or a peregrine falcon flying overhead. Pelican Bluffs just holds that kind of magic.

Over the years, I’ve walked, crawled and climbed over nearly every inch of Pelican Bluffs. I’ve searched for rare plants in the spring gales, hunted for Point Arena Mountain Beaver burrows in the pouring rain, fought my way through willow thickets only to stumble upon a mountain lion’s last meal. No amount of wind, rain, fog or ticks (well, maybe ticks) could make me love it less, and I feel privileged to have been part of opening this special place to the world. So, if you haven’t been there yet, please go—you won’t regret it.
Nature Appreciation - Sea Creature Features
If you don’t follow us on Facebook or Instagram, you probably missed our Nature Watch Wednesday posts last month. In honor of Coastal Cleanup Month and trash-free seas we took a deep dive into the lives of sea creatures.
Thanks to Ashley Brant for letting us share her sea creature photos!

Even if you already know the names of the featured creatures we hope you will click on through, there is always more to learn!
Is it a discarded orange peel? A lemon rind? A candy wrapper? A drowned banana slug?
Good news - the prognosis for kelp forests may not be as dire as scientists previously thought.
Also, it's so pretty, could it really be a predator? Plus an eye-roll worthy joke.
Please ask any larval sea creatures to leave the room before reading this post.

Join us on Facebook or Instagram to learn a little about local oaks
each Wednesday in OAKTOBER or watch for the recap in the next MLT Monthly.