The Upper Feather River Watershed is the homeland of the Mountain Maidu. The eastern and south eastern region of the watershed also has deep cultural significance to the Washoe Tribe of Nevada and California, the Northern Paiute Tribe, and the Nisenan Tribe. Borderlands of this large and diverse watershed are home to several other tribes.
Land protection for an Indigenous future
Since the beginning of memory, the Mountain Maidu people have inhabited the Feather River region. However, during the Gold Rush and beyond, violence, unratified land reservation treaties, and a lack of formal citizenship until 1924 left the Maidu mostly landless. The privatization of lands created a loss of daily connection necessary for traditional ways of life and cultural practices. Today, without concerted effort to restore language, traditional land management techniques, and connection to these homelands, the Maidu are facing cultural extinction within a generation. The Feather River Land Trust is working with Maidu community members, regional organizations, and others to protect Native homelands and promote access to diverse lands for current and future Maidu livelihoods.
Traditional land practices and partnership
Connecting people to land
Over millennia, local Indigenous communities have developed unique Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) to care for land, wildlife, and valuable natural resources. FRLT is working to build a stronger partnership with Indigenous communities to bring the best scientific and cultural knowledge to our land management projects. Together, we hope to not only restore important habitats and cultural sites in the short term, but to build trust and a collaborative network to manage the land long into the future. Protecting and enhancing the human connection to land is as important as protecting the natural resources we depend on to thrive.
Learn more about Native Homelands
From protecting headwaters and biodiversity to enhancing access to nature, learn what our supporters made possible.
We’re working to permanently conserve 43,000+ acres of important Maidu homelands, headwaters, and habitats owned and managed by Pacific Gas and Electric for public benefit.
Mountain Meadows is a hidden gem of scenic beauty, fresh water, and habitat for a rich diversity of wildlife and plants. This special Maidu homeland and beloved place for quiet recreation was protected in 2018.
The historic 903-acre Heart K Ranch boasts scenic mountain beauty, diverse woodland types, montane meadow habitats, and historic and cultural resources.
Sierra Valley Preserve is an ecologically rich 2,586-acre preserve protected for its unique wetland habitats and Feather River headwaters. On the Pacific Flyway, the Preserve offers spectacular birding.
Help improve the Leonhardt Ranch Trail, a beautiful nature trail located in downtown Quincy.
FRLT played a key role in helping to expand two California State Wildlife Areas in Sierra Valley.
2020 was an exceptional year for land conservation in the Feather River Country. See what our supporters made possible
Feather River College intern Bailey Graham explores "a promising career path" in land conservation and gets hands-on stewardship experience at FRLT's Heart K Ranch.
You Can Count On Us
As a nationally accredited land trust, we are built to last. We leverage your donations with state, federal, and foundation dollars and strategic partnerships to achieve the greatest possible impact for the lands, waters, and people of the Feather River region. You can count on us to make careful and effective use of your support.