Avi Kwa Ame
Issue: Wild Lands
Partners: Fort Mojave Indian Tribe, National Parks Conservation Association
Fly Fort Mojave Indian Tribe members and leaders and NPCA over the Spirit Mountain area to give tribal and city government officials and the press a better understanding of the proposed Avi Kwa Ame National Monument and how it fits into the larger landscape. The area is sacred to the tribe and provides vital habitat for desert species. Use flights to facilitate further collaboration between tribal leaders and conservation groups; and interface with the press, and generate the first story about the monument in the regional paper.
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.