Now Part National Monument With A Much Needed $3 Million Monument Fund.

On Friday morning, President Barack Obama designated a significant portion of Angeles National Forest (almost 350,000 acres) as San Gabriel Mountains National Monument. Also, the National Forest Foundation (NFF) announced approval of a $3 million San Gabriel Mountains Monument Fund (currently $850,000 has been raised for this pledge). In addition, the NFF is working with other groups to establish a $500,000 San Gabriel Partnership Fund.

San Gabriel Mountains National Monument Map

San Gabriel Mountains National Monument Map

A key reason to establish this area as a National Monument is to provide the ability to gain access to grant funding and public-private partnerships. That the ability to raise money and direct it is already providing much needed economic resources to this underfunded and sadly neglected resource is encouraging for me. I am hopeful that much needed improvements are far more likely to appear with this change.

View of Winston Ridge from my hike on Thursday--the last day before becoming part of the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument.

View of Winston Ridge from my hike on Thursday–the last day before becoming part of the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument.

With most of the hikes on this blog no longer being in Angeles National Forest, I might need to rethink its name and edit a lot of information such as where a peak is located in my peak bagging resume etc. Worth the effort though for the difference I think this will make for the forest. As with any change, there are those who are against it. In this case, I chalk that up to a lot of misinformation floating around. Casey Schreiner has followed this more closely than I and has written a number of good posts on what this change means. If your are interested in more information, this post on his blog Modern Hiker is a good place to start as is the new San Gabriel Mountains National Monument page.