Fifty Years of Accomplishments

Save Mount Diablo has come a long way since 1971. Scroll down to view some of our major accomplishments over the years.

2021

Cleanup and restoration work accomplished throughout the Mount Diablo region

Staff and volunteers hauled 250 pounds of trash from the Thomas Home Ranch and removed debris and graffiti from Pine Canyon. They also planted and protected 1,000 native plants and trees.

2021

Governor Gavin Newsom signed AB/SB 155, permanently preserving Tesla Park and creating a new state park.

This victory came after over 20 years of campaigning by Save Mount Diablo and other organizations who are part of the Friends of Tesla Park coalition.

2021

Elusive American badger sighted at Curry Canyon Ranch

American badgers disappeared from Mount Diablo in the 1970s, but they are starting to make a return to the region.

2021

Endangered California condor returns to Mount Diablo and Contra Costa County for the first time in over 100 years

Pinnacles Condor 828 flew north from Pinnacles National Park and circled around the eastern flanks of Mount Diablo before returning south to Pinnacles, covering over 100 miles each way. Her appearance gives hope that California condors may one day return to Mount Diablo and Contra Costa County.

2021

Save Mount Diablo organized grassroots movement against the City of Concord’s decision to make Seeno Master Developer

After the Concord City Council threw the massive Concord Naval Weapons Station reuse project into jeopardy by choosing Seeno/Discovery Builders as Master Developer, Save Mount Diablo organized to rally Concord residents whose voices were ignored. The petition to reverse the decision got over 18,000 signatures.

2021

Save Mount Diablo teaches course entitled History of Land Conservation Nationally and in the Mount Diablo Area, the Original and Future Stewards, and Careers in the Field at CSU East Bay

2021

More than 28 square miles preserved at Tassajara with the creation of the Tassajara Agricultural Preserve

After eight years of work by Save Mount Diablo, the Contra Costa Board of Supervisors approved the 125-unit Tassajara Parks project. The Board adjusted the urban limit line and created the 17,666-acre Tassajara Agricultural Preserve. They also dedicated 727 acres to the East Bay Regional Park District.

2021

Save Mount Diablo completed $15 million Forever Wild Campaign, permanently protecting 1,681 acres

2021

Two more OpenRoad videos about Save Mount Diablo’s work broadcasted

OpenRoad with Doug McConnell broadcasted a new video about Save Mount Diablo’s work on NBC Bay Area.

2021

Save Mount Diablo commits to planting and protecting 10,000 native plants and trees as part of our Climate Action Plan

2021

Save Mount Diablo passed a comprehensive organization-wide Climate Action Plan

Save Mount Diablo’s Climate Action Plan (CAP) outlines how our organization will use its strengths to accelerate reduction of our carbon footprint and increase our already significant contribution to addressing the climate crisis in the Diablo region. The CAP is organized by outcome-oriented objectives for major programmatic areas, including advocacy, land acquisition, stewardship, education, financial management (finances and fundraising), and organizational footprint. These objectives are associated with numerous actions that when completed will meet the objective.

2021

Save Mount Diablo files a lawsuit against the City of Pittsburg over approval of the Faria/Southwest Pittsburg Hills Annexation project

The project violates Pittsburg’s General Plan, state planning and zoning law, and the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). CEQA requires legally adequate environmental review, consideration of appropriate alternatives, and implementation of mitigations to reduce impacts.

2021

Save Mount Diablo continues Nature Heals and Inspires Zoom series, attracting over 2,000 participants

2021

Save Mount Diablo expanded Discover Diablo free public hikes program

Save Mount Diablo expanded its Discover Diablo free public hike series to also include mountain biking and rock-climbing events, bilingual Spanish-English hikes, and a total of 36 events (up from 24).

2020

Save Mount Diablo launched Diablo Range Revealed series

Save Mount Diablo launched a new series with Joan Hamilton of videos, blog posts, and photo galleries exploring the Diablo Range and its recovery from the 2020 wildfires.

2020

Save Mount Diablo voiced support for Contra Costa County’s decision to move forward with a comprehensive agricultural plan

2020

With the Mount Diablo Interpretive Association, Save Mount Diablo created two new Audible Guides

Save Mount Diablo’s “The Morning Side of the Mountain” explores Morgan Territory Regional Preserve and MDIA’s new film, “The Return of the Pine Canyon Peregrines,” features Save Mount Diablo’s project to reintroduce peregrine falcons to Mount Diablo.

2020

Cleanup work was accomplished throughout the Mount Diablo region

Staff and volunteers hauled 300 pounds of trash from the Thomas Home Ranch and removed dangerous bolts and glass shards from Pine Canyon.

2020

A landslide win on Measure T in Antioch

We received a 79 percent yes vote on our Measure T, safeguarding nearly 2,000 acres in the Sand Creek area east of Black Diamond Mines.

2020

Save Mount Diablo spoke out to hold the line on reservoir construction in Del Puerto Canyon and on the expansion of Los Vaqueros Reservoir

2020

New and old trails were built and maintained, including a trail connecting Smith Canyon to Curry Canyon Ranch

2020

Save Mount Diablo made comments supporting the declaration of a Climate Emergency in Contra Costa County

2020

Save Mount Diablo began monitoring the proposed Aramis solar project

2020

The East Bay Regional Park District approved a land-use plan for Concord’s first regional park

Located at the decommissioned Concord Naval Weapons Station, this new regional park is three times the size of Angel Island. The land-use plan designates the park as 95 percent open space with 27 miles of new trails.

2020

Forbes Magazine picked up Save Mount Diablo’s scavenger hunt

2020

Two OpenRoad videos about Save Mount Diablo’s work broadcasted

OpenRoad with Doug McConnell broadcasted a video about Save Mount Diablo’s work to protect North Peak and a video about the Diablo Range on NBC Bay Area.

2020

The Antioch City Council unanimously endorsed Save Mount Diablo’s initiative to save Sand Creek, and the initiative was placed on the November 2020 Antioch ballot

Antioch voters will have the chance to protect the prettiest three miles in Antioch in November 2020.

2019

Save Mount Diablo continued advocating for protection of Tesla Park

Tesla Park is part of a critical wildlife corridor connecting Mount Diablo to the 150-mile Diablo Range.

2020

Save Mount Diablo volunteers and staff began lighting the Mount Diablo State Park Summit Beacon every Sunday as symbol of hope and inspiration during the global coronavirus pandemic

Volunteers and staff will continue to light the Beacon every Sunday evening and put it to rest every Monday morning until the pandemic crisis is over.

2020

Save Mount Diablo launched our Nature Heals and Inspires Zoom series, attracting over 2,500 registrants

2020

Save Mount Diablo acquired 28-acre Smith Canyon, a potential recreational gateway to Curry Canyon and the east side of Mount Diablo State Park

2020

Danville voters passed Measure Y, protecting 381 acres of open space as the Magee Preserve

2020

Bay Nature magazine published an article about the Diablo Range sponsored by Save Mount Diablo and the Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority

2019

Save Mount Diablo and Concord Mt. Diablo Trail Ride Association signed an option agreement, 15 years in the making, to protect 154 critical open space acres on Mount Diablo’s North Peak

Save Mount Diablo has two years to raise a little more than $1.04 million to complete the conservation easement.

2019

The first 2,216 acres of the former Concord Naval Weapons Station is conveyed to the East Bay Regional Park District, creating the first regional park in Concord, Concord Hills Regional Park

More than 300 acres will be transferred at a later date; the new regional park will total 2,537 acres.

2019

Danville Town Council voted unanimously to protect 93 percent of the Magee Ranch as the Magee Preserve, including beautiful and ecologically important hills connecting to Sycamore Valley Regional Open Space Preserve

2019

Seth Adams’s oral history published

As part of the California Land Trust Oral History Project the The Bancroft Library, the Institute for the Study of Societal Issues at UC Berkeley published Seth Adams’s oral history, Moving Mountains: Thirty Years of Dynamic Northern California Land Acquisition and Open-Space Advocacy as Land Conservation Director of Save Mount Diablo

2019

Audible Mount Diablo guides became available as podcasts

2019

Two OpenRoad videos about Save Mount Diablo’s work broadcasted

OpenRoad with Doug McConnell broadcasted Save Mount Diablo Conservation Collaborative: A Program Connecting Kids with Nature and An Interview with Seth Adams: Defending the Pittsburg Hills, Youth Advocacy, and Imagining a Summit-to-Sea Trail on NBC Bay Area

2019

Diablo Watch 30th anniversary

Save Mount Diablo celebrated the 30th anniversary of publishing its magazine, Diablo Watch

2018

Measure FF passed with 84.2% of the vote, extending East Bay Regional Park District funding for western Contra Costa and Alameda Counties

2018

Save Mount Diablo published its fourth edition of its Mount Diablo Regional Trail Map

The map is available in both print and mobile versions. The mobile map is georeferenced, allowing people to navigate on their phones.

2018

Antioch City Council adopted the Sand Creek Area Protection Initiative proposed by Save Mount Diablo and its partners, increasing protection for more than 1,200 acres of hills, creek, and rare wildlife habitat in south Antioch

2018

Audible Mount Diablo released a brand new guide (on Black Diamond Mines) and two updated ones

Three Audible Mount Diablo guides released: Black Diamond Mines, Rock City, and Plants of Twin Peaks.

2018

Proposition 68—California Clean Water & Safe Parks Act passed

On June 5, 2018, California voters passed Proposition 68, a $4-billion bond measure called the California Clean Water & Safe Parks Act. Save Mount Diablo worked together as part of a larger statewide coalition to get the word out on multiple fronts prior to the election. Of measures that Save Mount Diablo has supported, this brings our tally to a total of 12 of 12 WINS at the ballot.

2018

Second OpenRoad video broadcasted

OpenRoad with Doug McConnell broadcasted A Vision for Mount Diablo: East Contra Costa County Advocacy in Action on NBC Bay Area.

2018

Save Mount Diablo celebrated the 30th anniversary of its first staff person, Seth Adams (now Land Conservation Director), at a sold-out event at the Lesher Center of the Arts

2017

Save Mount Diablo acquired 95-acre Anderson Ranch

2017

Save Mount Diablo acquired our first perpetual conservation easement

2017

One new Audible Mount Diablo guide and two updated guides released

Three Audible Mount Diablo guides released: Mitchell Canyon (originally released in 2012), Introducing Mount Diablo (originally released in 2010), and A Geology Tour on the Mary Bowerman Trail.

2017

First OpenRoad video about Save Mount Diablo’s work broadcasted

OpenRoad with Doug McConnell broadcasted A 4-Day Trek on the Diablo Trail: Trek Across One of the Largest Wild Landscapes in Urban America on NBC Bay Area.

2017

Save Mount Diablo implemented a new annual free guided public hikes series, “Discover Diablo”

2016

45th Anniversary—Protected land has expanded from 6,788 acres to 110,000

2016

Optioned 88-acre North Peak Ranch

2016

Marsh Creek Trail proposed

2016

Won 11 out of the last 11 ballot measures since 2005

2016

Implemented plan to address Curry Canyon Ranch loan

2016

Achieved national accreditation from Land Trust Accreditation Commission

2016

Created and adopted new rolling three-year Strategic Plan

2016

Won California Nonprofit of the Year Award for Assembly District 16

2016

Implemented new Conservation Collaboration Agreement program

2016

Expanded conservation buyer program, including use of conservation easements

2016

Protected 76-acre Hanson Hills property with East Bay Regional Park District and East Contra Costa County Habitat Conservancy

2016

Mount Diablo buckwheat rediscovered by botanists Heath Bartosh and Brian Peterson of Nomad Ecology

2016

Trail Through Time, an Audible Mount Diablo guide, released

2015

Restored a volcanic dome on Marsh Creek Road

2015

Total event attendance tops 5,000

2015

10 years working on the Concord Naval Weapons Station reuse plan

2015

Executive Director Ted Clement hired, Ron Brown retires

2015

Audible Mount Diablo guide about Rock City released

2014

Big Bend protected, the most recent protected segment of Marsh Creek. Marsh Creek protection now totals 15 of 33 miles

2014

Created a Dublin Urban Limit Line to protect Doolan Canyon

2014

Two Audible Mount Diablo guides released

Two Audible Mount Diablo guides released: Los Vaqueros and Perkins Canyon.

2013

Finally! 1,080-acre Curry Canyon Ranch acquired for $7.2 million (including a $4.5 million loan)

2013

1,885-acre Roddy Ranch protected near Antioch

2013

Created Mary Bowerman Science and Research Program

2013

Over the next three years, funded a dozen small grants under the new Mary Bowerman Science and Research Program

2013

Morgan Fire burned 3,300 acres

2013

Historic “Eye of Diablo”—Mount Diablo beacon—restored

2013

Audible Mount Diablo guide on plants of Twin Peaks released

2012

Acquired more of Highland Ridge

2012

Removed 20,000 lbs. of debris from Thomas Home Ranch, then transferred it to EBRPD

2012

Co-founder Art Bonwell passed away at age 85

2012

Four Audible Mount Diablo guides released

Four Audible Mount Diablo guides released: Round Valley, Lime Ridge, Curry Point, and Mitchell Canyon.

2011

Helped keep Mount Diablo State Park from being closed again

2010

Defended the Urban Limit Line in Brentwood and San Ramon ballot measures

2010

Opposed a name change for Mount Diablo

2010

First two Audible Mount Diablo guides released

First Audible Mount Diablo guides released, Grand Loop and Introducing Mount Diablo.

2009

165-acre Viera-North Peak purchased—highest private parcel in the county

2009

Restoration at Irish Canyon and Marsh Creek IV

2008

Protected 399 acres

2008

Helped pass EBRPD’s $500 million Measure WW

2008

Two new wildflower species discovered at at Lime Ridge

2007

Save Mount Diablo closed escrow on Irish Canyon and Marsh Creek, preserving a total of 537 acres

2007

East Contra Costa County Habitat Conservation Plan created—providing millions of dollars in the coming years

2007

First Mount Diablo area recreational map created

2007

Our first BioBlitz (at Irish Canyon)

2007

Mangini Ranch protected

2006

Measure L made the Urban Limit Line stronger

2005

Our first Mount Diablo Bike Challenge

2005

Mount Diablo buckwheat rediscovered after being presumed extinct for 69 years

2005

Co-founder Mary Bowerman passed away at age 97

2004

Completed 16 years of work to preserve 3,000-acre Riggs Canyon

2004

Mount Diablo Gateway property protected

2004

First house torn down for environmental restoration in Contra Costa County

2004

Urban Limit Line changes require voter approval now

2003

Morgan Red Corral and Joseph Galvin Ranch protected

2003

Opposed the Los Vaqueros expansion ballot item

2002

4,000 acres added to Diablo preserves, including 3,647-acre Cowell Ranch

2002

Seeno’s 640-acre Morgan Territory Ranch protected and a $1 million fine. SMD continued opposition to FUA #1 and the County Open Space funding measure

2002

Save Mount Diablo expanded area of interest to include Altamont Pass area

2002

Five peregrine falcon chicks fledged in Diablo region

2001

Wright/Curry property protected

2001

30th Anniversary—EBRPD designated crest of Highland Ridge in Morgan Territory as “Founders Ridge”

2001

Aided fundraising efforts at Cowell Ranch

2000

Deal on Cowell Ranch

2000

Contra Costa County’s Urban Limit Line tightened

1999

Silva Ranch acquired

1999

1,123-acre easement at Roddy Ranch

1999

Turtle Rock Ranch Resort protected

1999

Final Blackhawk dedication in the Black Hills, Oyster Point Area

1998

First part of Clayton Ranch protected

1998

Athenian School land dedication

1998

Center of Black Diamond Mines protected

1997

Opposed Pittsburg Southeast Hills annexation, Cowell Ranch and Tassajara developments

1997

Helped preserve Vasco Caves

1997

Save Mount Diablo opens its first office

1996

Brushy Peak Regional Preserve created

1996

Lower Sycamore Canyon protected

1996

Co-founders Arthur Bonwell and Dr. Mary Bowerman received a Chevron-Times Mirror Magazine National Conservation Award

1996

25th Anniversary

1995

Significant acquisitions at Round Valley and Lime Ridge Open Space

1994

Round Valley expanded

1994

Chaparral Spring acquired, first parcel in Black Diamond Mines corridor

1993

Proposed 30-mile “Diablo Trail” from Walnut Creek to Brentwood

1993

Lime Ridge Open Space expanded

1993

More of Riggs Canyon protected

1992

Last year of peregrine falcon reintroduction program

1992

Proposed a Mount Diablo to Black Diamond Mines corridor

1992

Three Springs protected

1991

Stopped development at Chaparral Spring

1991

Stopped development at Clayton Ranch

1991

20th Anniversary

1990

First County Urban Limit Line

1990

Prop. 117—mountain lion initiative—passed

1989

Reintroduced peregrine falcons to Mount Diablo

1989

631-acre Morgan Ranch—first connection from Mount Diablo to Morgan Territory Regional Preserve; fought three Contra Costa landfill proposals; first part of Round Valley protected

1989

Successful referendum of Crystyl Ranch project, resulting in 330 acres of open space

1988

400 supporters grew to 1,500

1988

First significant foundation grant

1988

Helped pass state park bond, then EBRPD’s $225 million Measure AA

1988

Boy Scout Camp Force in lower Rock City protected

1988

Save Mount Diablo hired first staff

1988

Castle Rock protected

1987

Riggs Canyon preservation continued

1987

First Strategic Plan created

1986

Part of Curry Canyon, Coyote Creek, and Morgan Territory Ridge protected

1985

Contra Costa General Plan Congress

1985

More of Pine Canyon protected

1984

Black Point area transferred from the BLM to California State Parks

1984

Protected Soto Ranch—White Canyon

1983

Mount Olympia protected

1982

Emmons Canyon and Rhyne Canyon protected

1982

Mount Diablo designated as a National Natural Landmark

1981

Created Concord’s Pine Hollow Open Space

1981

10th Anniversary

1980

First Blackhawk dedications—largest donation to California State Parks system in history

1980

Supported down zoning in the Tassajara Valley

1980

North Peak and Prospectors Gap preserved

1979

Funding for the Las Trampas to Mount Diablo Trail

1979

Opposed PG&E high tension lines through Black Diamond Regional Preserve and Mount Diablo State Park

1979

Save Mount Diablo opposed Bogue Ranch in Alamo

1978

Protected Oyster Point area and the Falls Trail area

1978

Save Mount Diablo earned Mount Diablo designation as State Historical Landmark

1977

Macedo Ranch protected

1977

Huge fire on Mount Diablo’s northern slopes

1976

Diablo Foothills Regional Park created

1976

Perkins Canyon, Pine Canyon protected

1976

Save Mount Diablo’s first direct acquisition, the 117-acre “Corner Piece”

1975

Morgan Territory Regional Preserve created

1975

Mitchell and White Canyons preserved

1975

Supported Walnut Creek acquisition at Shell and Lime Ridges

Save Mount Diablo helped secure Land and Water Conservation Fund monies.

1975

Pushed for the creation of Morgan Territory Regional Preserve

1974

Opposed the first Blackhawk Plan

1974

Supported the 1974 Park Bond Act

1974

Save Mount Diablo began its first “April on the Mountain” hike series

1973

Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve and Shell Ridge Open Space created

1973

Preserved Donner Canyon, part of Mitchell Canyon

1973

SMD helps preserve Donner Canyon and part of Mitchell Canyon, advocates for Black Diamond and Shell Ridge

SMD helped preserve Donner Canyon, part of Mitchell Canyon, and pushed for the creation of Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve and Shell Ridge Open Space, including support of state and local bonds for acquisition.

1972

Lobbied for County Tree Preservation Ordinance

1972

Save Mount Diablo established priorities

SMD established priorities, including the preservation of the mountain’s major peaks and expansion of Mount Diablo State Park to Morgan Territory and Highland Ridge. Save Mount Diablo also lobbied for creation of the County Tree Preservation Ordinance and opposed the Morgan Territory Estates development.

1971

Save Mount Diablo began lobbying for California State Parks funding

According to the minutes taken at Save Mount Diablo’s founding, that same day, the organization immediately began lobbying for legislative funding, in this case specifically for passage of and funds from the Park Bond Act, AB 3066.

1971

Save Mount Diablo founded

Save Mount Diablo is convened on December 7, 1971, Pearl Harbor Day, at Heather Farms Garden Center in Walnut Creek.

1971

Mount Diablo State Park—the only Diablo park—includes just 6,788 acres

Join us to save the remaining natural lands of Mount Diablo!

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