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Avi Kwa Ame National Monument Proposal
Issue: National Parks
Partners: Mojave Desert Land Trust, National Parks Conservation Association
Airport Origin : Laughlin, NV
EcoFlight flew with NPCA to produce a virtual tour and call-to-action video. The video will introduce the public to this special landscape that is sacred to many tribes, and that is the missing piece that connects the California desert to the Colorado River Plateau, playing an essential role in climate adaptation. The video will encourage people to learn more about a proposal to establish a national monument and to support legislation that would do so.
The proposed Avi Kwa Ame (Mojave name for Spirit Mountain) National Monument contains some of the most visually stunning, biologically diverse and culturally significant lands in the entire Mojave Desert. Monument designation would protect an essential corridor that connects the Mojave National Preserve, Castle Mountains and Mojave Trails National Monuments and Dead Mountain Wilderness Area in California with Lake Mead National Recreation Area in Nevada and the Colorado Plateau. This will serve as a contiguous block of habitat of sufficient quality and quantity to promote the survival, growth, reproduction, and maintenance of viable populations of Mojave Desert flora and fauna.
As important as this area is ecologically, it is equally significant as a cultural landscape. This entire area is considered sacred by the nine Yuman speaking tribes as well as the Hopi and Chemehuevi Paiute. For the Yuman tribes, the area is empirically tied to their creation, cosmology, and well-being. Spirit Mountain, called Avi Kwa Ame by the Mojave Tribe, is located on the eastern boundary of the proposed Monument. It is designated a Traditional Cultural Property on the National Register of Historic Places in recognition of its religious and cultural importance.