BCLT’s conservation properties in the Greater Alpine area include our “signature” preserve, Wright’s Field MSCP Preserve, in the center of Alpine, as well as the adjoining Findel Ranch property, and three separate conservation properties in North Alpine, collectively known as our Mountain View properties. Altogether these preserved lands add up to 300+ acres of protected open space in Greater Alpine.
Findel Ranch is a 30 acre preserve in central Alpine, adjacent to Wright’s Field. Once a large tract of land ranched by some of Alpine’s original residents, this land, like many of the sprawling pioneer homesteads, was sold off piece by piece until eventually only a small portion of the original homestead remained in the ownership of a single family, the Findel’s. Now protected as native habitat land, the Findel Ranch property is dominated by oak woodlands, coastal sage scrub, and patches of native grassland. This area is the headwater basin for the North Fork of the Sweetwater River, with a deeply-incised waterway running from west to east that carries a seasonal creek down to Loveland Reservoir. In addition to the pioneer history on the property, there are several areas containing Kumeyaay grinding stones under the large oak trees along the creek.
Mountain View Properties in North Alpine (Dartmouth, Dyke, Lake Tahoe)
BCLT’s “Mountain View” properties are located in North Alpine. This block of conservation land is made up of three separate parcels - the Dartmouth property, the Dyke property, and the Alpine/Lake Tahoe property. Altogether these conservation lands total approximately 80 acres of open-space.
The Dyke property is 40-acres of upland sage scrub habitat located behind the Crown Hills development with sweeping views of El Cajon Mountain, Peutz Valley, and the surrounding areas. In 2017, BCLT purchased an additional 10-acre parcel immediately adjacent to the Dyke property known to the San Diego County tax assessors office as the Alpine/Lake Tahoe property. The previous owner of this land was tax-delinquent for many years, and the County then offered the property for sale to adjacent owners. BCLT was able to buy this additional 10-acres. Combined these two properties create a 50-acre block of protected conservation land behind Crown Hills for wildlife habitat and passive recreation use.
Our Dartmouth property is a sprawling and steeply-sloped area containing important riparian habitat at the headwaters of Peutz Valley. Several tributary streams run down through steep canyons from the Old Stagecoach neighborhood in North Alpine to Peutz Creek and into the El Capitan Reservoir (City of San Diego drinking water). BCLT owns and manages these lands for wildlife habitat and surface water protection. Native habitat dominates along these seasonal creeks, with coastal sage scrub found on the upper slopes and willow-cottonwood riparian habitat found nearer to the stream beds. Mature Western Sycamore trees provide summer shade and fall colors to these important watercourses, while also adding scenic foreground to the changing views of El Cajon Mountain and Peutz Valley in the distance.