Natural Resource Condition Assessments for John Muir National Historic Site

The Natural Resource Condition Assessment (NRCA) Program provides framework, funding, and publishing support to parks to aid in the synthesis and documentation of natural resource conditions. Condition assessment reports are a tool to describe selected park resources, and record a snapshot of their current condition, identify trends, and identify potential or current threats and stressors. Understanding the condition and trend of natural resources is key for parks and NPS planners to appropriately prioritize and allocate stewardship resources.

Black and white photo of John Muir in profile, wearing a suit, and sporting his trademark beard.
John Muir
As an influential naturalist and conservationist, John Muir fought to protect the wild places he loved. Muir shared his love of nature through writing and inspired people to protect our country's wild places, fueling the formation of the National Park Service and the modern conservation movement.

Located in the San Francisco Bay Area in California, the John Muir National Historic Site honors this great man, preserving the 14-room mansion where Muir lived along with 325 aces of woodland and grassland owned by the Muir family.

Traditional NRCA Report: 2014

In an effort to better understand the natural resources and processes within this Park, a Natural Resource Condition Assessment was conducted and published in 2014. The National Park Service partnered with the University of California Santa Barbara to examine the available data and current needs of the Park, and assessed ten main resource and stressor topics:

- Housing development

- Human footprint

- Air quality

- Climate

- Water quality

- Non-native invasive plants and Sudden Oak Death

- Alameda whipsnake

- Fire regime

- Future fire regime

- Habitat connectivity

The condition assessment identified a number of emerging issues that may become of greater management concern to the Park in the future. The most obvious of these is climate change from anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases. Other threats include increased housing density in neighboring areas with associated increases in ozone, nitrogen deposition, skyglow, noise, invasive plants, road kill and wildlife risk. Responding to these regional threats will require the Park to collaborate with other agencies and communities. This approach both acknowledges the ecological and social role of the Park in the broader landscape, but also builds capacity for the Park’s small resource staff.

For other reports and natural resource datasets visit the NPS Data Store.

Source: Data Store Collection 7765 (results presented are a subset). To search for additional information, visit the Data Store.

Last updated: February 25, 2022


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