Get to Know the Amah Mutsun Land Trust

The Amah Mutsun Land Trust (AMLT) restores and stewards the ancestral lands of the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band. Learn more about their important work and how to get involved.

by Hilltromper Staff
Aug. 11, 2023—The Amah Mutsun Land Trust (AMLT) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to restoring and stewarding the ancestral lands of the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band and adjacent Awaswas language cultural areas that span from Año Nuevo to the larger Monterey Bay area. 
AMLT’s activities help restore the land, bring Indigenous history and land stewardship practices back, and provide an opportunity for healing from generations of horrific trauma. 
All of these activities provide a tremendous opportunity for the public at large to learn and grow in understanding and appreciation for the Indigenous community that has been here for upwards of ten thousands of years, despite the unconscionable efforts to erase them, literally and historically.
Here are a number of AMLT activities, news, and ways to get involved:

Weed 'Em Out Invasive Plants Removal (Pie Ranch/Cascade Ranch)

Since 2021, Pie Ranch and AMLT have been working together at the historic Cascade Ranch on Año Nuevo Point to propagate native plants for stewardship of Quiroste Valley Cultural Preserve, located in Año Nuevo State Park. Pie Ranch has created the "Cascade Regenerator Program" to support new regenerative agricultural operations that aim to produce foods and other plants in a way that supports the local ecology.
As part of the regenerative approach to agricultural land stewardship, Pie Ranch and AMLT work together with volunteers to remove eucalyptus seedlings/saplings and other invasive species along the sensitive riparian corridor of Cascade Creek at Cascade Ranch.
There is a volunteer Weed ‘Em out workday coming up on August 12, 2023. Even if the event is full or the date has passed by the time you read this, be sure to subscribe to the AMLT email list to be notified of future events.

The Mutsun Native Gardens (UCSC Arboretum and beyond)

AMLT has established native plant gardens at UCSC Arboretum, San Juan Bautista State Historic Park, and Pie Ranch. These beautiful gardens celebrate the region's ethnobotanical history, and there are work days where you can get involved yourself. 

Protect Juristac: No Quarry on Amah Mutsun Sacred Grounds!

Juristac (Huris-tak) lies at the heart of the ancestral lands of the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band near Gilroy, California. For thousands of years, Mutsun ancestors lived and held sacred ceremonies at this location in the southern foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains, above the confluence of the Pajaro and San Benito rivers.
The sacred hills and open valleys at the heart of the Juristac Tribal Cultural Landscape are today bounded by the Sargent Ranch. An investor group based in San Diego purchased the land at a bankruptcy auction and is currently seeking to develop a 403-acre open pit sand and gravel mining operation on the property.
The Amah Mutsun Tribal Band vehemently opposes the proposed mining project. They are asking the public to join them in standing for the protection of their sacred grounds. 

Conservation and Cultural Easements Provide Permanent Protection of Nyland

On Jun 19, 2023, Trust for Public Land along with the San Benito Agricultural Land Trust, the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County, and the Amah Mutsun Land Trust announced the
conservation of the historic Harvey and Gladys Nyland Property, providing permanent protection of the historic 540-Acre ranch. 
The cultural easement will provide the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band special access to the property for cultural, spiritual, and ceremonial traditions. Amah Mutsun guidance will also facilitate restoration, conservation, and stewardship of the lands and waters using traditional and contemporary indigenous knowledge and methods.