Fire Management Units: Wilderness South
WILDERNESS SOUTH (2,297 acres) - This unit is largely comprised of designated wilderness land south of the Vedanta Society property. It follows Inverness Ridge south to just south of Mud Lake, and includes Firtop (1,324 ft). The unit also encompasses land southwest of Firtop, reaching to the coast at Wildcat Camp. Vegetation is dominated by dense stands of Douglas-fir with significant amounts of dead and downed material present. The southwest corner of the FMU also supports high quality stands of coastal scrub, including coffeeberry, California sagebrush, coyote brush, bush monkeyflower, and lizardtail. This FMU supports two plant species of management concern, Marin manzanita (Arctostaphylos virgata), and California bottlebrush grass (Elymus californicus). Marin manzanita is fire dependent, and in the absence of fire, this stand has become unhealthy and cannot reproduce. Encroachment of Douglas-fir has also served to reduce direct sunlight and further the “decadent” status of the Marin manzanita population in this part of the park. Shrubs in these stands are old and not reproducing, or dead.
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