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California Issues

H. R. 5660: Chuckwalla National Monument Establishment and Joshua Tree National Park Expansion Act of 2023  
To provide for the protection of natural and cultural resources, Tribal collaborative management, sustainable economic development, enhanced recreation, and equitable access on Federal lands in eastern Imperial and Riverside counties, California, and for other purposes.

NOTE:  If this bill is passed or the area becomes a National Monument or National Park the Hauser Geode Beds.may be in danger of being closed to Recreational Rockhounding even though there is a current MOU between the BLM and Recreational Rockhounds through the CFMS and ALAA. If this Bill fails to pass, the Monument or National Park Extension may be created through a Presidential Executive Proclamation.

43 CFR § 8365.1-5 - Property and resources.

Rockhounding on Public Lands - California

California Geological Survey   May 7, 2024

The legislation below, if enacted, may or may not have an affect on Recreational Rockhounding...

H.R. 215: To provide long-term water supply and regulatory reliability to drought-stricken California, and for other purposes.

CA Wilderness Areas (Just Click to Access) NEW 10-25-2020

Personal-use obsidian collection to reopen at the four Warner Mt. sites

After a year off due to the pandemic and five plus years of coordination with tribal and county partners, the Modoc National Forest will reopen the four designated collection areas in the Warner Mountains to personal-users with a valid permit.

The four collection areas shown on the map at https://go.usa.gov/x6NKB are the only locations obsidian collection is authorized on the Modoc National Forest.

Obsidian collection season will run this year from July 1 through Labor Day Weekend. Adults 18 years or older will be issued one-day permits authorizing collection of two five-gallon buckets of obsidian using hand tools only. A maximum of three permits per person per year can be issued up to three days in advance. Permits are only available at the Modoc National Forest Headquarters at 225 W. 8th St. in Alturas, Calif. Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1 p.m.-4:30 p.m. Valid picture identification and vehicle information are required for each individual seeking permits. Permits for weekends and holidays must be obtained on days Forest Headquarters is open.

“We are happy to again offer this unique recreation opportunity and beautiful material for traditional cultural users and other artisans who use it to create amazing works of art,” said East Zone District Ranger Heidi Lowery. “It is not easy to find a balance between wise use and maintaining this nonrenewable resource for future generations, but it was clear the impacts of commercial and unpermitted mining were not sustainable or fair to the people most impacted. Hopefully all the hard work put into this new plan by forest staff and key stakeholders can offer collection opportunities, maintain the resource for future generations and limit the negative impacts on local communities, including those who have stewarded this resource for millennia.”

Though permitted personal-use collection will resume, commercial obsidian mining is no longer authorized on the Modoc National Forest.

Commercial mining impacts increased over the last decade as overseas purchasers sought large quantities of obsidian rocks. This led to unsustainable impacts to the resource, surrounding forest and nearby communities. Theft and illegal mining activities increased substantially with evidence of heavy equipment, unauthorized roads, wildfire ignitions, unsafe mining practices, impacts on other forest users and an overall unsustainable removal of this non-renewable resource.

Read More: https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/modoc/news-events/?cid=FSEPRD922994

Man cited for having a dredge stored in a container on his private property in California...

The dredge was stored inside a cargo container on his private property and not in operation, just being stored. The container is near a little dry creek bed on his private property. He has a county road easement which passes through his property and someone (allegedly) took a picture of the dredge from the road and sent it to an LEO (Law Enforcement Officer) with Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW).  READ MORE:

More on Dredging in California can be found Lower down on this page...

Wildfire Safety Tips - Public Service

Do you Camp or recreate on Public Lands in California?
Do you use a Campfire or Cookfire? (Even an open flame Propane Stove)
Do you know to be legal you must have a valid California Campfire Permit in your possession?
Do you know where and how to get your Free "California Campfire Permit"?

Get Your California Campfire Permit Online

Visit www.preventwildfireca.org/Campfire-Permit

Watch a short video - take a quiz - get your online permit - save or print pdf or just bookmark the link on your mobile device to display when needed. Permits expire on December 31 of the year issued.

Do not get caught with a campfire without your Campfire Permit!

California Department of  Fish and Wildlife

Please Note: BLM Links may not currently work. The BLM is re-building their websites and there are some minor problems to be worked out. When the websites are working the ALAA Links will also be updated to the new website information. Some of the websites are now working. Dec 2017


Go to: http://findyourrep.legislature.ca.gov/
Enter your address, city and zip code. Click on “Locate.” Your Senator will appear to the right of the map along with their contact information.

California BLM New Website  Posted 4-14-207

California BLM Contact Information  -  New website  Posted 4-14-2017

BLM Monument Management  -  Envisioning Sessions Posted August 28, 2016

You have probably noticed that the Mojave Trails National Monument is deceiving in that the effective Monument boundary will cover an enormous amount of land, far more land than the proclamation. The Monument contains 6 no vehicular entry Wilderness Areas, but also connects to and effectively incorporates into it's boundary, another 8 no vehicular entry Wilderness Areas, 1 no entry Military Base, and the no collecting lands of the Mojave National Preserve and Joshua Tree National Park.

ALAA has established an Email Addfress calnatmonuments@amlands.org and a letter mailing address of ALAA;  2010 West Ave. K  #528; Lancaster, CA 93536-5229.  We are asking Rockhounds who contact the BLM in support of continued Recreational  Rockhounding inside the California National Monuments to please include ALAA with a cc; or Bcc; of any emails and if you send a paper letter to please include a copy to the above address.  There is still a lot of work to do before we can rest and the collecting of rocks and minerals in the monuments is finalized.  Thank you for your effort and support


Recreational Rockhounding is the collecting of reasonable amounts of nonrenewable resources such as rock and mineral specimens and materials, common invertebrate and common plant fossils, semiprecious gemstones and Petrified wood for noncommercial (Personal and Educational) purposes where permitted by law.   Recreational Rockhounding is accomplished in a manner that prevents hazards to public health and safety, and minimizes and mitigates environmental damage.


Cady Mountains

BLM Desert District Advisory Council (Up-Dated September 2016)

Reports and Handouts For the May 21st Meeting in Barstow

Support your right to collect Rock and Minerals in the Southern California Desert and the New National Monuments - Get Involved, be Pro-Active.  It is the only way to save Rockhounding inside the Mojave Trails National Monument! It is up to you!

San Gabriel Mountains National Monument Plan and Land Management Plan Amendment  Public Comment Period - July/August 2016

Comment Letter on Recreational Rockhounding in the SGMNM - October 2016

Can't make it to the California Desert?  Take an online tour of the spectacular California Desert.          Take an online Tour

New Information on WEMO - November 25, 2015

Latest Information on California Wildfires - Cal Fire   Posted August 4, 2015

Could Rockhound Firldtrips on Public Lands go the way of some OHV Events? Read More!


September 23, 2014 the California Court of Appeal, Third Appellate District, issued a unanimous opinion generally affirming the theory of federal preemption in the mining context. This is a big win for mining community, which has been attempting for roughly five years, through multiple cases in multiple forums, to secure a judicial ruling on the 2009 moratorium and its successors. Read More on California Gold Mining

BLM Issues Interim Final Supplementary Rules for Kanaka Valley (BLM News Release) The BLM's Mother Lode Field Office is requesting public comments on proposed new rules affecting 695 acres of public land known as Kanaka Valley in El Dorado County. http://ow.ly/DWnlN       Speak now or forever hold your....... you know the rest!

The rules are available online for public review at the BLM Mother Lode Field Office

Western Mining Alliance - August 2015 Newsletter

Dredgers defend mining rights in California Supreme Court   -  People v. Rinehart: A NEWS ANALYSIS  By Brad Jones  -  June 14, 2016


California Renewable Energy Information (DRECP)
Updated August 2020

BLM ROD Released September 15. 2016

New 3,800 acre Solar Site Planned Near Hauser Beds

Desert Quartzite Solar Project Draft Environmental Analysis Available for Public CommentThe Bureau of Land Management is seeking public input on actions that would allow the proposed development of the Desert Quartzite Solar Project, a 450-megawatt solar development in eastern Riverside County. 3,800 Acres (5.9375 Sq. Miles)

The publication of the draft Environmental Impact Statement in the Federal Register through the Environmental Protection Agency on Friday, Aug. 10 will signal the start of the 90-day public comment period, which will end on Nov. 8.  In addition to the draft EIS, other documents made available for comment include the Environmental Impact Report and draft Land Use Plan Amendment.

The Clock is Ticking, Rockhounds!


West Mojave Desert Plan Information (WEMO)


Cady Mountains Highways and Byways by Gregor


Clear Creek Recerational Area Information (CCMA)

H.R. 403: To establish the Clear Creek National Recreation Area in San Benito and Fresno Counties, California, to designate the Joaquin Rocks Wilderness in such counties, and for other purposes.

  • Status of HR 403  Introduced January 10, 2019  Died in Committee in the 117th Congress
  • Text of HR 403  (Not available as of January 14, 2019)

Note:  This bill will have an impact on Recreational Rockhounding in the Clear Creek Area...


Johnson Valley Recreation OHV Area Information


California Organizations Supporting Public Lands Usage


Providence Mountains State Receration Area - Mitchell Caverns State Park.

Mitchell Caverns is open to the public as of November 3, 2017


Forests of California

News/Press Release - Kern River and Lake Isabella Glass Ban ‎May ‎17, ‎2016

  • This notice lists the newspapers that will be used by all Ranger Districts, Forests, and the Regional Office of the Pacific Southwest Region to publish legal notices required under 36 CFR 214, 218, and 219. The intended effect of this action is to inform interested members of the public which newspapers the Forest Service will use to publish notices of proposed actions, notices of decision, and notices of opportunity to file an appeal/objection. This will provide the public with constructive notice of Forest Service proposals and decisions, provide information on the procedures to comment, appeal, or object and establish the date that the Forest Service will use to determine if comments, appeals, or objections were timely.  Click on the forest of interest and see what Newspapers will have the Public Notice anouncement about that forest and the USFS Actions.   Read the Notice Here....



Patterson, Mims Join Central Valley Residents to Rally Against New Protections for Frogs and Toads in Local Mountains  May 1, 2014

California Foothills Legacy Area program    NEW as of July 28, 2013

New CARB Requirements for OHRV in California to take effect in 2018

City of Redding and CARB Informational Letter

Learn About Public Lands Access Issues in California (ARRA)

CALIFORNIA FOSSIL IVORY ALERT - Our First warning to any dealers with a business in California or those dealers that plan to attend the West Coast Gem & Mineral Show (Fall), Santa Ana CA November 11 -13 of this year (or any show in California). The California Ivory ban goes into effect on July 1, 2016 and it will be illegal to sell any fossil ivory in the state after that date. The legislation's definition; "Ivory" means a tooth or tusk from a species of elephant, hippopotamus, mammoth, mastodon, walrus, warthog, whale, or narwhal, or a piece thereof, whether raw ivory or worked ivory, and includes a product containing, or advertised as containing, ivory. You will risk confiscation of your fossil ivory and very stiff fines and other penalties for having any of the legally collected material available during the shows or for sale in your business. From AAPS May 2016 Newsletter

In California there is already an existing ban on Ivory import and sales, but that ban has an exemption for sale of Ivory that had been imported prior to January 1, 1977, which protected a significant portion of the Ivory owners in California at the time. Experts tell us that exemption covers millions of dollars of ivory objects in the state that don’t fall into the otherwise very narrow exemptions in the existing law.

Read more on Ivory and Rockhounding

State Assembly Bill AB-96 Animal parts and products: importation or sale of ivory and rhinoceros horn.


BLM Issues in California

BLM Field Offices Rockhounding and Recreation Information Pages Click Here....


Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation and Rockhounding NEW


Additional Public Meeting Scheduled for Soda Mountain Solar Project in San Bernardino County

The Bureau of Land Management has scheduled an additional public meeting for public comment on the Soda Mountain Solar Project's draft environmental document. The meeting is scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 11, 2014, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Travelodge Inn and Suites Yucca Valley Meeting Room, 54850 29 Palms Highway, Yucca Valley.

BLM News Release: Soda Mountain Solar Project Decewmber 2013

The Director’s Protest Resolution Reports analyze each unique or summarized protest issue statement received on each individual BLM Proposed Resource Management Plan to determine whether the State Director followed established procedures, considered relevant information in reaching proposed decisions, and whether the proposed decisions are consistent with the applicable statutes, regulations, and BLM policy.

The following Director’s Protest Resolution Reports are available for online viewing or download.

Wilderness Designations in California  posted May 27, 2016

Latest Information Affecting California Public Lands  

HR6286 Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act of 2012   --- This bill would close rockhounding areas under new wilderness, but leave off road access in place.  Rockhounds should read the text of the bill and should contact their elected official to voice their opinion on this bill.   Read the bill below on this page under Clear Creek Management Area.  Read a letter to Congressman Doc Hastings through the hyperlink below.

Protected areas of the Mojave Desert  "NEW" Added July 31, 2013

                          Sacrificing the Desert For What?
        By Brad Mitzelfelt, San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors
                                   Via CORVA Website

Resource Management Plan Revison - Read the Plan - Affects Horse Canyon Agate Beds 

National Forests in California

Inyo National Forest shares plan direction for Sustainable Recreation and Aquatic-Riparian Resources

The Inyo National Forest is finalizing its environmental impact statement and forest plan. To celebrate our progress, and prepare you for when we release the final documents this fall, we’re offering you a preview of the Inyo’s updated plan direction for sustainable recreation and aquatic and riparian resources. This isn’t the only preview we have planned. In the coming weeks, you’ll see updated plan direction for wild and scenic rivers and species of conservation concern. All this information will be available on-line at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/goto/r5/FPRPreview.

When you see the Inyo’s final forest plan later this year, you’ll notice we made a few changes based on many of the suggestions, ideas and comments you provided us. For instance, we refined our analysis particularly around recreation, wild and scenic rivers, recommended wilderness, aquatics, grazing and fire management. We improved the plan’s architecture to provide better organization and clarification based on your comments on the draft forest plan (published May 2016).

Curious about the Sequoia and Sierra National Forests? We’re continuing to address public comments in a revised draft EIS for these two forests. We’ll share updates on that progress in the coming months as well.

These previews offer a glimpse into plan development as it is happening. This process is information sharing; we are not receiving formal comments. The completed, final EIS and Inyo plan will be available for a 60-day objection period this fall. If you have questions feel free to contact Deb Schweizer, Public Affairs Officer, Inyo National Forest, at 760-873-2427.

Sustainable Recreation  (Recreational Rockhounding is not included)

Get more Information at http://www.fs.usda.gov/goto/r5/FPRPreview.

It is not to late to save Recreational Rockhounding in these National Forests, if we get involved, NOW!  Do not wait, Get Involved!


10 Best Places to Camp for FREE in Northern California posted 11-4-2106

The Cleveland National Forest received funding from the California Off-Highway
Vehicle (OHV) Grants Program to decommission unauthorized routes, as defined by
the 2008 Motorized Travel Management decision, that have the greatest resource

Southern California National Forest Land Management Plans - Final EIS (2005)


Click here for  more information on Southern California National Forests

March 2015: Feds sued for blocking thousands of recreational routes in Plumas National Forest

Stewards of the Sequoia

That $5 permit to access certain parts of national forests in Southern California could soon be a thing of the past, thanks to a recent ruling by the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. A panel of judges unanimously agreed with four hikers who objected to paying a fee to use a portion of an Arizona national forest. Read the Court Ruling

BUSTED! Los Padres National Forest ticketed 200 Santa Barbara families for parking by the side of the road to let their kids play in a rare snowfall. It seems that little adventure requires an "Adventure Pass." Read the story HERE.

San Gabriel Valley Tribune writer Steve Scauzillo explains how it could affect the Adventure Pass (http://www.whittierdailynews.com/news/ci_19974329) which is only available for the Angeles, San Bernardino,Cleveland and Los Padres national forests:,

The strongly worded, 15-page decision says any member of the public who walks, hikes, rides a horse, picnics on the side of a road, camps at undeveloped sites, even parks in a national forest "without using facilities and services" is allowed to do so without being charged. Charging a fee, such as the Adventure Pass, even for someone who visits an area with amenities but doesn't use them, violates the FLREA [or, Federal Lands and Recreation Enhancement Act], according to the decision.

El Dorado County Sheriff Strips Forest Service Of State-Law Enforcement Power

  • SACRAMENTO, CA (July 31)-- The Eldorado National Forest is free from preservationist litigation attacking a Travel Management Plan that originally closed just over 900 miles of roads and trails. Today Senior U.S. District Judge Lawrence K. Karlton issued his final order and judgment in a case originally filed in 2009. Download final order - PDF
  • October 14, 2012 - Eldorado NF Releases Travel Management Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (TM SEIS) On Re-opening Routes Closed via Court Order
    Read More:
  • October 14, 3012 - Brief History of Legal Battle over Eldorado NF
    Read More:
  • Here is the Forest Service news release on the court order
    Read The Cort Order:

Federal Court Decision Keeps Access Open for Hunting - This Still Helps Rockhounds

Inland Desert Monument Act 2011 - Sen. Feinstine's Replacement for the California Desert Protection Act of 2010  See Map of proposed area....

CEQA: The California Environmental Quality Act

Senate Bill 624 - Remove Serpentine as California State Rock

Feinstein Introduces Legislation to Protect Areas of Mojave Desert --- Press Release

California Wilderness Act of 1984 - 98-425

Ref.: S21 - California Desert Protection Act of 1994 Summary - Where it all began!

History of Land Use in the California Desert - (PDF) Posted February 2013

Southern California National Forests Land Management Plan Amendment

Los Padres National Forest

California State Legislation - Bills before the State (New 2021)

California Watch Dog - Your Eyes on California Government/Politics

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