Pinnacles National Park

Cliffs from Juniper Canyon Trail in Pinnacles National Park
Miguel Vieira-Flickr
Volcanic spires and California condors lure visitors to Pinnacles National Park. Formerly and national monument, we helped see that this climber’s paradise was upgraded to a national park in January, 2013.

Violent volcanic eruptions once formed the craggy spires, sheer canyons and caves at Pinnacles National Park near Soledad, Calif. Bats and California condors live amidst chaparral plains, oak hills and creeks. We’re working to upgrade this gem to a national park.

Dramatic geology

Visitors to Pinnacles can explore its craggy spires, sheer canyons and bat caves. Hikers and climbers, are drawn to the unusual geology of this park.

Wildlands here also include:

  • Chaparral
  • Grasslands
  • Oak woodlands
  • Shaded creek areas

California condors at Pinnacles

This endangered species is a visitor favorite. With up to 10-foot wingspans, these large birds are frequently seen soaring over the volcanic cliffs. In 2010, a condor chick made headlines because it was the first time in a century that a condor was hatched in the federal park, a place where these birds once thrived.

Since 2003, Pinnacles National Park has been a part of the California Condor Recovery Program and the park manages about 30 of the birds which are tagged but fly freely.

A new national park

The Wilderness Society worked with local partners to support efforts to upgrade Pinnacles National Monument to a national park. We succeeded and on Jan. 10, 2013, Pinnacles National Monument became Pinnacles National Park

This upgrade:

  • Gives the area more recognition and status
  • Helps boost local economies with more visitors
  • Increases protected wilderness by another 3,000 acres

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