facebook youtube linkedin instagram twitter

Land Acquisition

Conserving special places for their watershed, wildlife and recreational values

View of the South Rim
     View of the South Rim, photo by Mysteri LeMay  

Conservation in the Upper San Diego River (above the El Capitan Reservoir dam plus El Cajon Mtn.) is a core focus for the San Diego River Park Foundation.  The Upper San Diego River Gorge and the areas that drain into it are, in many places, truly pristine wilderness.  Largely within or next to the Cleveland National Forest, there are many privately owned properties, some homesteaded before 1900! The River serves as a corridor for the movement of many wildlife species and has been considered by some experts as the most biologically diverse area in the entire country.

Several years ago, a number of privately owned undeveloped properties were identified that were important to conserve as open space. Since then, we have been working with landowners to donate or sell their properties so that they could remain as they are in perpetuity. Many of these lands provide critical connections for deer and other wildlife to nearby open space areas, some contain woodlands with our nation's rarest oak, the Engelmann, or other very special species. Most have other values including scenic vistas or opportunities for public recreation.

You are invited to join this effort to conserve this incredible open space.

We also offer an opportunity to give monthly as little as $8 to our Acquisition Program.

As a monthly donor, you will be invited to special events and behind the scenes update from the CEO. Together we can do extraordinary things!

Current Projects:


Project Success

Since we started this effort, we have completed the conservation more than two dozen parcels and two easemenst totalling more than 2600 acres!  We have worked with partners to conserve more than 2000 additional acres including the pool at Cedar Creek Falls.

Once successfully acquired, the San Diego River Park Foundation’s Save The Source program is dedicated to managing these properties, conducting restoration as needed, and introducing the public to these amazing places through outings, volunteer programs and education.  Click the link to learn more about these efforts to care for the land.



Sign up for our Newsletter and get up to date information.
Sign up today »