California - Mojave Trails National Monument

State: California
Region: California Desert

In February 2016, President Obama designated the Sand to Snow, Castle Mountains and Mojave Trails National Monuments after hearing from thousands of supporters urging him to preserve these important lands. The designations come after nearly a decade of work by Senator Dianne Feinstein and countless others to ensure protections for these areas for recreation and important wildlife values.

One of North America’s most unique landscapes, the Mojave Desert is home to vital wildlife habitat, unspoiled desert vistas, and an incredible slice of American history. The Mojave Trails National Monument is the connective tissue linking Mojave National Preserve to Joshua Tree National Park and existing Wilderness Areas, providing habitat for sensitive wildlife and pristine scenery. It contains irreplaceable archeological and cultural sites including sacred Native American trails and trade routes.

The monument contains numerous archeological and cultural sites, Native American trails and trade routes and the longest undeveloped stretch of historic Route 66. The designation protects these cultural resources as well as the scenic lava flows of Amboy Crater  550 million year old trilobite fossil beds and the perennial river in Afton Canyon where the subterranean Mojave River surfaces.