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ES Land Trust protects historic site

January 24, 2014

The Eastern Sierra Land Trust recently obtained this historic piece of property on Green Creek, south of Bridgeport. Shown above is one of the country’s first hydroelectric plants, which was built on the property to supply power to Bodie mines. Photo courtesy Eastern Sierra Land Trust

Eastern Sierra Land Trust ended 2013 and kicked off the new year with a new addition to its collection of preserved wild spaces in the Eastern Sierra.
In the final days of 2013, ESLT accepted what it is calling a “very generous gift” from the David and Elva Sinai Foundation. The group donated an important, 40-acre conservation property along Green Creek, in the hills south of Bridgeport.
“Thanks to the enormous generosity of the Sinai Foundation, this parcel’s stunning scenery, historic value, and its wealth of vital resources will be preserved for public enjoyment for generations to come,” a press release from the ESLT states.
The ESLT’s mission is to work with willing local land-owners to preserve land for its scenic, agricultural, natural, recreational, historical and watershed values.
The Green Creek parcel that ESLT added to its inventory of more than 6,000 acres of protected land last week is entirely surrounded by public lands.
ESLT said the “landscape is a recreationist’s dream,” with a popular fishing access trail and wildlife viewing opportunities. It is home to several “ecologically-significant” native plants, and many Eastern Sierra animal species, including mule deer, black bears and beavers. Notable birds, such as the northern goshawk and greater sage grouse, can also be found on the property.
This piece of property is also the site of one of the earliest hydroelectric power plants in the United States, so “the parcel has great historic value,” the ESLT said. The power plant operated from 1893 until 1941, and supplied electricity over a 13-mile line to power the Bodie mines.
“ESLT is deeply grateful to the Sinai Foundation for their donation of the Green Creek property, and for their ongoing commitment to the preservation of our region,” ESLT Executive Director Kay Ogden said. “We are committed to protecting this spectacular place by ensuring that future land uses are compatible with its historical and natural values.”
This latest donation from the David and Elva Sinai Foundation follows a long family tradition of charitable giving. The current trustees of the Foundation, Theodore J. Schroeder and David J. Reese, have worked since 2006 to preserve the historic Sinai Green Creek 40-acre site. “By partnering with ESLT, they have laid the groundwork to see that this special place remains open space, forever,” the ESLT said.
In partnership with the Sinai Foundation, the ESLT added that it would like to express its sincere thanks to Elaine Alexander, Greg James, Patrick Mooney, James Pace, Laure’l Santos and Aline Sinai for their help preserving this parcel of property.
Funding for this conservation project has been provided by the Sierra Nevada Conservancy.

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