Continuing Conservation for Castle Rock
Since first helping to establish Castle Rock State Park in 1968, realizing the vision of Dr. Russell Varian, a pioneer of x-ray and radar technology, Sempervirens Fund supporters have expanded the park, purchasing 36 properties and protecting more than 4,000 acres. In recent years, and in response to fears that Castle Rock State Park might close, Sempervirens Fund stepped in, guiding Castle Rock into a new era, planning and funding top-notch facilities and a sustainable funding model at the Robert C. Kirkwood entrance. In 2023, the Robert C. Kirkwood entrance and five more protected properties were officially added to Castle Rock State Park. Today, we continue to protect priority land, like Castle Rock Hollow, to help expand the park for people and wildlife to enjoy for generations to come.
Larger connected areas of protected lands provide greater recreational opportunities as well as healthier habitats ensuring wildlife have what they need to survive and thrive. Finalizing the purchase of these properties by California State Parks for permanent addition to Castle Rock State Park would ensure that they both continue to be well-managed for conservation and resiliency—augmenting California’s 30x30 and climate, wildfire, and community resiliency goals—and formally expand the park’s incredible recreational experiences into new lands, habitats, and vistas. Here are some of the most recent lands that Sempervirens Fund supporters have protected forever and added to Castle Rock State Park:
Panorama Ridge is 40-acres of spectacular ridge-top views of Monterey Bay, Big Basin Redwoods State Park, and the Pacific Ocean. Sempervirens Fund and the owner protected the land in 2005 with a special life-estate agreement to allow the owner to continue living in his home on a 5-acre portion of the property that is off limits to park visitors while sharing its beauty with the public. Thanks to this partnership, people and wildlife will continue to enjoy this breathtaking place in Castle Rock State Park.