In April, Sonoma Land Trust closed escrow on the 200-acre Fitzsimmons Ranch, an inholding of private land within the Hood Mountain Regional Park and Open Space Preserve. The expansion of the park will ensure that future generations of visitors and wildlife can thrive and adapt in this important corridor of the Mayacamas Mountains. Upon closing on the property, Sonoma Land Trust transitioned the property to Sonoma County Regional Parks for inclusion into the park system.
Fitzsimmons Ranch has a rich history. Homesteaded in 1912 by Max Arthur Fitzsimmons and his wife Maud William Fitzsimmons, the couple received a land grant that was signed by the U.S. President in 1913. While they returned to Santa Rosa to live shortly thereafter, Max, Maud and subsequent generations of their family maintained the ranch for cattle grazing and family visits.
Image: Location of the Fitzsimmons Ranch, which joins the property of surrounding Hood Mountain Regional Park. (Sonoma Land Trust)
Blessed with stunning views as far away as San Francisco, the ranch is part of an 85-mile wildlife movement corridor that connects Point Reyes on the Marin Coast to the interior mountains of Lake and Napa counties. It also possesses rare plant communities and is a significant source of water resources.
“Fitzsimmons Ranch is a beautiful property with substantial water resources that can only be fully appreciated by visiting and experiencing it directly,” says Dan Winterson who manages the Bay Area Conservation Portfolio at the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. “I’m so grateful that the landowners and Sonoma Land Trust were able to work together to protect this important habitat and allow for public access in the future.”
The foundation is pleased to help support this project to ensure the preservation of critical piece of land that is now part of the unique and special character of the Bay Area.
Sonoma Land Trust to add Fitzsimmons Ranch to Hood Mountain Regional Park, Sonoma County Gazette
Land Trust donates historic 200-acre homestead to regional park, Sonoma Index-Tribune