County of Marin - News Releases - Bowman Canyon Ranch

For Immediate Release
August 16, 2018

Parks Pursues Addition to Mount Burdell Preserve

Open Space District Board to discuss portion of nearby Bowman Canyon Ranch

San Rafael, CA – To expand recreation opportunities and protection of an important natural habitat, Marin County Parks is proposing to purchase 167 acres of ranchland adjacent to the Mount Burdell Open Space Preserve.

A view of the hills of Bowman Canyon Ranch near Novato.Bowman Canyon Ranch is just west of the Mount Burdell Open Space Preserve in Novato.

Parks is bringing a draft sale agreement for a portion of Bowman Canyon Ranch in western Novato to the Marin County Open Space Board of Directors on August 21. The purchase price of the land is $2,505,000.

The land being considered for acquisition is part of the western side of Mount Burdell and includes a scenic ridgeline with countywide views. The land also supports habitat for special-status species, such as red-legged frogs.

If approved, the acquisition would increase the Mount Burdell Open Space Preserve from 1,627 acres to 1,794 acres. The rest of the 860-acre Bowman Canyon Ranch, amounting to 693 acres, would remain in private ownership and not be open to the public.

“This property has been on the Marin County Open Space District list of priority acquisitions for many years,” said Marin County Parks Planning Manager Carl Somers. “It is part of the land form of Mount Burdell and a priority conservation area noted in Marin County Parks and Open Space Strategic Plan and Plan Bay Area. Existing fire roads are in place on the property which could offer public access.

“The Open Space District is grateful to be given the opportunity to protect a part of Bowman Canyon Ranch for the public.”

Measure A, a quarter-cent sales tax approved by countywide voters in 2012, would fund the property purchase. Thirteen percent of Measure A funds are mandated for land acquisition. To date, Parks has used Measure A acquisition funds to purchase Sky Ranch near Fairfax, and, in coordination with Marin Audubon Society, the Corte Madera Baylands.

Measure A supports the parks, open space and farmland that make Marin an extraordinary place to live. By law, Measure A funds projects and programs that benefit parks, open space, and agricultural lands across Marin. The land acquisition portion of Measure A tax revenue generates an average of $1.7 million per year. Measure A runs through 2021.


Carl Somers
Chief of Planning and Acquisition
Marin County Parks

Marin Civic Center
Suite 260
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 473-2820
Email: Carl Somers
Marin County Parks website