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PLACER COUNTY, Calif. (KTXL) — CAL FIRE has been given 1,151 acres of forest from PG&E in Placer and Nevada counties as part of their planned 2,618 acre demonstration forest.

This land, located at the headwaters of the American River in Sierra Nevada forestlands was acquired by CAL FIRE in partnership with the Placer Land Trust.

CAL FIRE NEU Unit Forester Steve Garcia said the land north of Lake Valley Reservoir in the Emigrant Gap area and can be accessed off of the Yuba Gap exit on Interstate 80.

The land trust holds a conservation easement on the Placer County land that prevents any type of subdivision, and maintains the natural state of the forest.

“We’re pleased to work with CAL FIRE and other partners to ensure that this beautiful forest – and the vast watershed it supports – is protected forever for public recreation, ecological health and climate resilience,” says Jeff Darlington, Executive Director of the Placer Land Trust.

Courtesy of the Lake Spaulding Stewardship Council

This is the second of a three phase effort to create the more than 2,000 acre demonstration forest. Recently 267 acres between the South Yuba River and the Bear River, below Spaulding Lake, were acquired as part of the forest.

The final phase is a 1,200 acre section of forest currently maintained by PG&E that is planned to be given to CAL FIRE in 2023. This property is located near the Bear River.

These lands will not be contiguous and Garcia said some areas may be challenging to access and walk-in access may be the only option.

CAL FIRE currently operates 12 Demonstration State Forests that total 73,500 acres of protected forestlands.

These lands can be used for recreation, watershed protection, wood products and sustainable timber production and habitat restoration.

“Looking landscape wide, these forests demonstrate how harvests and growth can be balanced over a century to maintain optimally stocked forests, a key measure of sustainability,” CAL FIRE writes on their website about these types of forests.