Placeholder Image photo credit: Vivian Chen/Save the Redwoods League
The towering old growth Clar Tree seen from the
forest floor.

It won’t be in their control forever, but Jeff Stump, land protection manager for Save the Redwoods League said that hasn’t dampened the mood in the slightest.

"This land will be eventually transferred to Sonoma County for permanent stewardship, which is really exciting," Stump said. "And I think the league is gonna maintain a role as a partner. We have a lot of experience working in the restoration field."

The 394-acre property currently has a timber harvest plan, named Silver Estates, in place. With the County unable to buy the site on such a short timeline, the League has stepped in as the intermediary, looking to raise the six and half million dollars needed to purchase the property by the end of September.

Stump said he's happy to plug the gap for such a special chunk of forest.

"There's not many of these intact redwood forests left and particularly that have what is really a giant old growth redwood," Stump said.

Stump is talking about the Clar Tree.

"It somehow escaped the logging that happened in, I think that was wrapped up in 1870 or so in the area," Stump said. "So it's pretty remarkable to walk out and to look up in this grove and, and to see this giant tree. And it's thousands of years old, you know, unclear exactly; and now it's about 279 feet high."

Stump said the Clar Tree wasn’t spared from this previous rough winter.

"It lost a little bit of its height this winter in one of our large storms that knocked the top off of the tree," Stump said. "But it's really remarkable to stand next to a giant like that."

While the Clar Tree is the final standing reminder of the old growth, there’s also plenty of stumps - of the redwood kind - Jeff Stump said.

"This riparian grove, you can see the stumps from the 1870's," Stump said. "They're still there, and, and it shows you how remarkable the forest was. There's a lot of second growth, you know, very large second growth trees. And the grove is just this really remarkable recovering forest."

And Stump said it’s the future of which excites him.

"You can really imagine what it's gonna be like in the future when we have an opportunity to protect it and, and really work towards restoring that old growth grove," Stump said. "It's, it's, it's a long-term vision for the future."

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