Alabama hills

What’s Happening

After a decade long effort to gain protection for the Alabama Hills, Friends of the Inyo alongside the Alabama Hills Stewardship Group (AHSG) and countless other partners, helped pass the John D. Dingell Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act (The Dingell Act) which designated the Alabama Hills a National Scenic Area. With this victory comes the opportunity for the public to help decide the future of the Alabama Hills. The Dingell Act requires the Bishop BLM Field Office to build a management plan for the Alabama Hills that will “conserve, protect, and enhance the nationally significant scenic, cultural, geological, educational, biological, historical, recreational, cinematographic, and scientific resources of the Scenic Area.” This is where you get involved!

Why It Matters

These Alabama Hills continue to foster a unique relationship will all who visit. From the grand scale of the majestic Sierra Nevada to the smallest details of vibrant spring wildflowers, from the sudden power of the winter wind to the timeless processes of geology, the Alabama Hills draw people to wander, contemplate, experience solitude and enjoy an incredible range of discovery and activity.  

While visitation and multiple use by outdoor enthusiasts, sports lovers, artists, and visitors is increasing, the rocks, roads, hiking paths, creeks and flora remain scenic and unspoiled. Film industry use continues, but with a heightened sense of history for both the area and the films of Hollywood.

With the development of a new implementation plan comes the opportunity to strike the balance between conserving scenic values and existing recreational uses in the Alabama Hills. The Alabama Hills are under increased pressure from unchecked recreational use. We work alongside the AHSG to promote the long term vision, conservation, use, enhancement, and enjoyment of the Alabama Hills. 

What We’re Doing About It

In Nov. 2019, Bishop BLM initiated the scoping process for the new implementation plan. This allowed the public to provide initial ideas on future activities in the Alabama Hills such as camping, toilets, OHV roads, climbing, and much more. Friends of the Inyo submitted scoping comments which can be read here. This comment period closed December 23rd.

In the Spring, Bishop BLM will release a draft implementation plan. This will provide a great opportunity for the public to review the draft plan and submit comments suggesting changes and/or supporting elements of the plan. This will be a 30-day comment period. Stay tuned for an action alert from Friends of the Inyo once the draft plan is released. Alternatively, you can track the release of the document at the BLM E-Planning site linked here. Please contact our Desert Lands Organizer, Bryan Hatchell, with any questions you may have at bryan@friendsoftheinyo.org

Take Action

Send a Letter

Send a letter to the BLM encouraging
the timely completion of a management plan
for the newly designated
Alabama Hills National Scenic Area

Join the AHSG

Join the The Alabama Hills Stewardship Group,
a 501c3 non-profit.

Volunteer

Volunteer your time
in the Alabama Hills.

Updates

DC Trip to Protect Public Lands

Desert Lands Focus of Washington Visit Last month, the Conservation Lands Foundation sent a coalition of public lands groups to Washington DC. I was fortunate to join, and meet with our congressional offices about public lands. Friends of the Inyo has a long history working to protect the California desert. With recent administrative attacks it was a perfect time to meet with congressional staff and touch on current threats and opportunities. From hearing rooms to hallways to cafeterias, our meetings took place just about everywhere. Our packed three-day agenda consisted of a visit to the Senate building to meet Feinstein…

The People of the Owens Lake Bird Festival

While the birds were the star of the festival, the people made it pretty great too:   Saturday started out cold (photo by David Carle)…   But we persisted, and had a great time (photo by Janet Carle).   It was a gorgeous day to search for birds (Gabby Guerrero).   We learned a lot from Bob Steele about the art of bird photography (Sam Dummer).   Dave Herbst led his always popular exploration of the microbiotic life of Owens Lake (Janet Carle).   (David Carle)   This year’s festival offered many excited trips off the lake. Here’s the group…

Final Product on the Alabama Hills Trail

Check out the finished work by Friends of the Inyo’s Stewardship Crew on the Alabama Hills Trail. The crew is done for the season. We really appreciate the fine work they did not only on the Alabama Hills Trail- a new trail that connects the town of Lone Pine to Whitney Portal by way of the Alabama Hills – but accross the Eastern Sierra, from the Golden Trout Wilderness to Black Canyon in the White Mountains, on up to the Bridgeport Area and everywhere in between. Check out below for more pictures of their great work.