Establishment of the Sand to Snow National Monument, 8379-8385 [2016-03548]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 32 / Thursday, February 18, 2016 / Presidential Documents 8379 Presidential Documents Proclamation 9396 of February 12, 2016 Establishment of the Sand to Snow National Monument By the President of the United States of America A Proclamation The Sand to Snow area of southern California is an ecological and cultural treasure, a microcosm of the great geographic diversity of the region. Rising from the floor of the Sonoran Desert to the tallest peak in southern California, the area features a remarkable diversity of plant and animal species. The area includes a portion of the San Bernardino National Forest and connects this area with Joshua Tree National Park to the east, knitting together a mosaic of spectacular landscapes stretching over 200 miles. The mountain peaks of the Sand to Snow area frame the northeastern reach of Coachella Valley along with the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument to the south. Home to desert oases at Big Morongo Canyon and Whitewater Canyon, the area serves as a refuge for desert dwelling animals and a stopover for migrating birds. The archaeological riches of the Black Lava Buttes and the historical remains of mining and ranching communities tell of past prosperity and struggle in this arid land. The unbroken expanse is an invaluable treasure for our Nation and will continue to serve as an irreplaceable resource for archaeologists, geologists, and biologists for generations to come. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with D2 The Sand to Snow area encompasses a rich diversity of geological and ecological resources, including a nearly 10,000-foot elevation gradient from the Sonoran Desert floor to the top of the 11,500-foot San Gorgonio Mountain, the highest mountain in southern California. From the flat desert lowlands, the mountains thrust upward in stark relief, creating indelible beauty along with a unique diversity of resources and a rich history of human habitation and movement. Along this remarkable topographic gradient lies an unusually wide range of ecosystems, ranging from lowland Mojave and Colorado deserts to scrub and woodlands and Mediterranean chaparral to subalpine and alpine conifer forests. San Gorgonio Mountain is one end of the longest recorded line of sight in the lower 48 States, the other being Mount Whitney, 190 miles away. In addition, the Henry Washington Survey Marker, located on San Bernardino Peak, serves as the starting point for surveying land in southern California and is included on the National Register of Historic Places. San Gorgonio, so named after Saint Gorgonius by early 17th century Spanish missionaries, is just one name for this remarkable, region-defining mountain. The Cahuilla Indians call the mountain Kwiria-Kaich, which means ‘‘bald’’ or ‘‘smooth,’’ and consider it among the sacred peaks of southern California. The Gabrielino Indians from the Los Angeles Basin treat San Gorgonio ˜ Mountain with reverence and refer to it as Akvangna. The Luiseno Indians consider San Gorgonio Mountain sacred and the older brother of Mount San Jacinto; both peaks were among the first born of Earth Mother. The ˜ Luiseno refer to San Gorgonio Mountain as Pewipwi. Thirty miles of the world famous Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail run through the Sand to Snow area, climbing 7,000 feet from the desert of Whitewater Canyon to Mission Springs in the San Bernardino National Forest. The history of this renowned trail dates back to the 1920s when the idea of a border-to-border trail was first conceptualized. Although the VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:18 Feb 17, 2016 Jkt 238001 PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\18FED2.SGM 18FED2 8380 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 32 / Thursday, February 18, 2016 / Presidential Documents establishment of the trail took decades to fully materialize, today the trail is a national icon, highlighting the wilderness treasures of the American West. Since its completion, over 3,000 people have hiked the 2,600 miles of continuous trail along the Pacific crest, including the Mission Creek Canyon segment found within the Sand to Snow area. The Sand to Snow area first took its current shape 175 million years ago with the subduction of the Pacific Plate beneath the North American Plate. The San Bernardino Mountain range in the western half of the Sand to Snow area is unusual in California, a transverse range as distinct from the north-south mountain ranges found through most of California. This difference in direction results from a change in the San Andreas Fault, which shifts direction to the west of the Sand to Snow area. This intersection of mountains makes this area a critical bridge for wildlife traversing the high elevations of southern California’s desert landscape. Two branches of the San Andreas Fault run through the Sand to Snow area, and the faulting that created the mountains and canyons throughout this landscape also created the Morongo Valley. The Whitewater Canyon area has been featured in numerous studies of the plate tectonics and geologic rifting of southern California, including studies that examine the impact of earthquakes on fault stability. The San Bernardino Mountains and Big Morongo Canyon contain ancient rocks from the Proterozoic Eon, along with some of the oldest exposed rocks in California, nearly 2 billion years old. Granite, gneiss, and schist in these areas have been used by geologists to better understand the tectonic history of the region, and are a testament to the area’s important geologic past. Covering a range of nearly 10,000 feet in elevation, the Sand to Snow area includes an extraordinarily diverse range of ecosystems from lowland deserts, fresh water marshes, and Mojave riparian forests, to creosote bush scrub ecosystems, and alpine peaks. Hundreds of springs rise to the surface at South Fork Meadows, the origin of the South Fork of the Santa Ana River. The Sand to Snow area has been important to biological and ecological research, as well as studies of climate and land use change, the impact of fires and invasive species management. The area has a remarkable species richness that makes it one of most biodiverse areas in southern California. The area is home to 12 federally listed threatened and endangered animal species. Species include the endangered peninsular bighorn sheep, San Bernardino Merriam’s kangaroo rat, Arroyo toad, Mountain Yellow-legged frog, and unarmored threespine stickleback, as well as the threatened Santa Ana sucker, Coachella Valley fringe-toed lizard, and desert tortoise. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with D2 A tremendous diversity of other wildlife species also make their homes here. In the San Gorgonio Wilderness, black bears, mountain lions, bobcats, mule deer, and bighorn sheep can all be found. Species such as ringtails, kit fox, striped skunk, California ground squirrel, blacktail jackrabbit, and 19 species of bat live in the Big Morongo Canyon Preserve. Amphibians and reptiles including the Mohave Rattlesnake, red diamond rattlesnake, rosy boa, desert spiny lizard, California kingsnake, Western whiptail, and Pacific tree frog also live in the Sand to Snow area. The Sand to Snow area is famous for its oases frequented by over 240 species of birds, including the endangered Least Bell’s vireo, southwestern willow flycatcher, and Yuma clapper rail, as well as the threatened coastal California gnatcatcher. Big Morongo Canyon, characterized by steep canyons, rugged terrain, and desert oases, is particularly high in biodiversity and is among the largest desert riparian habitats in California. It has been recognized as among the most important avian habitats in the State. Common birds found at Big Morongo Canyon include shore birds like the American white pelican, great blue heron, and green heron, raptors such as the Swainson’s hawk, Northern Harrier, and American kestrel, owls, including the western screech-owl and great horned owl, and hummingbirds, woodpeckers, vireos, and finches. Additionally, 32 species of migratory birds VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:18 Feb 17, 2016 Jkt 238001 PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\18FED2.SGM 18FED2 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 32 / Thursday, February 18, 2016 / Presidential Documents 8381 of conservation concern have been identified in the Sand to Snow area, including eagles, sparrows, owls, hummingbirds, woodpeckers, and falcons, among others. The Sand to Snow area is home to dozens of native plant species, including 14 federally listed threatened or endangered species of flowering plants. These include the endangered California dandelion, Coachella Valley milkvetch, Cushenbury buckwheat, Cushenbury oxytheca, pedate checker-mallow, San Bernardino bluegrass, San Bernardino Mountains bladderpod, Santa Ana River woolly-star, slender-petaled mustard, and triple-ribbed milk-vetch and the threatened ash-grey paintbrush, Bear Valley sandwort, Parish’s daisy, and Southern Mountain wild-buckwheat. The southern-most stand of quaking aspen trees is located here as are important stands of white fir and bigcone Douglas-fir. The human history of the Sand to Snow area extends back thousands of years. People now identified as part of the Takic subset of the large UtoAztecan group of Native Americans arrived in the region around 2,500 years ago. Ancient people of the area used a wide variety of plants from both the mountains and the Mojave desert, such as honey mesquite, oak, ˜ pinon, cactus fruits, yucca roots, and tubers as well as grasses, seeds, and berries. Common tools were made of wood, bone, shell, stone, clay, and plant fibers. These people also manufactured woven goods, pipes made of stone, awls made of bone, tools associated with archery, and fire drills. They made coiled basketry and simple undecorated ceramic pots used for storage and transport. The name ‘‘Serrano’’ was given to people living in the Sand to Snow area by the Spanish missionaries in the late 18th century and translates from Spanish as a ‘‘person from the mountains.’’ In 1834, the Spanish forcibly relocated many Serrano people to the missions. In 1840 the Serrano suffered a devastating smallpox outbreak, and the disease returned in 1860. Ruth Benedict, one of the world’s foremost cultural anthropologists, studied the Serrano extensively in 1924. However, by this time there were few remaining eastern groups and no old shamans or priests survived. Today, the rich archaeological resources in this area serve to preserve the history of the Serrano people. Black Lava Butte, topped by distinctive basaltic lava flows, is sacred to the Serrano Tribe and home to a substantial number of archaeological sites, including evidence of habitation, rock art, and possible ritual activities. Black Lava Butte contains an estimated 1,700 distinct petroglyphs, most of which have not yet been studied and may provide insight into the history of the Serrano and other tribes in the region. The mesa also contains dozens of isolated grinding and milling sites and at least one shelter site, where many milling stones are present. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with D2 After the Holcomb Valley gold rush of 1860, ranchers used the area for grazing sheep, horses, and cattle. Many of the ranchers kept their herds at lower elevations during the winter and drove their stock to the meadows of the San Bernardino Mountains to graze during the summer months. Old cattle paths, watering holes, and campsites remain a part of the landscape today. Although not particularly successful, many miners prospected in the southeastern portions of the San Bernardino Mountains. Evidence still remains in the form of old cabins, mine shafts, prospecting pits, and refuse deposits. The protection of the Sand to Snow area will preserve its cultural, prehistoric, and historic legacy and maintain its diverse array of natural and scientific resources, ensuring that the historic and scientific values of this area remain for the benefit of all Americans. In addition to its significant scientific and historic values, the area also provides world class outdoor recreation opportunities, including hunting, fishing, hiking, camping, mountain biking, and horseback riding. WHEREAS, section 320301 of title 54, United States Code (known as the ‘‘Antiquities Act’’), authorizes the President, in his discretion, to declare VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:18 Feb 17, 2016 Jkt 238001 PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\18FED2.SGM 18FED2 8382 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 32 / Thursday, February 18, 2016 / Presidential Documents by public proclamation historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest that are situated upon the lands owned or controlled by the Federal Government to be national monuments, and to reserve as a part thereof parcels of land, the limits of which in all cases shall be confined to the smallest area compatible with the proper care and management of the objects to be protected; WHEREAS, it is in the public interest to preserve the objects of scientific and historic interest on the Sand to Snow lands; NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by the authority vested in me by section 320301 of title 54, United States Code, hereby proclaim the objects identified above that are situated upon lands and interests in lands owned or controlled by the Federal Government to be the Sand to Snow National Monument (monument) and, for the purpose of protecting those objects, reserve as part thereof all lands and interests in lands owned or controlled by the Federal Government within the boundaries described on the accompanying map, which is attached to and forms a part of this proclamation. These reserved Federal lands and interests in lands encompass approximately 154,000 acres. The boundaries described on the accompanying map are confined to the smallest area compatible with the proper care and management of the objects to be protected. All Federal lands and interests in lands within the boundaries of the monument are hereby appropriated and withdrawn from all forms of entry, location, selection, sale, or other disposition under the public land laws or laws applicable to the U.S. Forest Service, from location, entry, and patent under the mining laws, and from disposition under all laws relating to mineral and geothermal leasing, other than by exchange that furthers the protective purposes of the monument. The establishment of the monument is subject to valid existing rights. If the Federal Government acquires any lands or interests in lands not owned or controlled by the Federal Government within the boundaries described on the accompanying map, such lands and interests in lands shall be reserved as a part of the monument, and objects identified above that are situated upon those lands and interests in lands shall be part of the monument, upon acquisition of ownership or control by the Federal Government. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with D2 The Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of the Interior (Secretaries) shall manage the monument through the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), pursuant to their respective applicable legal authorities, to implement the purposes of this proclamation. The USFS shall manage that portion of the monument within the boundaries of the National Forest System (NFS), and BLM shall manage the remainder of the monument. The lands administered by USFS shall be managed as part of the San Bernardino National Forest. The lands administered by BLM shall be managed as a unit of the National Landscape Conservation System, pursuant to applicable legal authorities. For purposes of protecting and restoring the objects identified above, the Secretaries shall jointly prepare a management plan for the monument and shall promulgate such regulations for its management as deemed appropriate. In developing any management plans and any management rules and regulations governing NFS lands within the monument, the Secretary of Agriculture, through USFS, shall consult with the Secretary of the Interior through BLM. The Secretaries shall provide for public involvement in the development of the management plan including, but not limited to, consultation with tribal, State, and local governments. In the development and implementation of the management plan, the Secretaries shall maximize opportunities, pursuant to applicable legal authorities, for shared resources, operational efficiency, and cooperation. Nothing in this proclamation shall be construed to interfere with the operation or maintenance, or with the replacement or modification within the VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:18 Feb 17, 2016 Jkt 238001 PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\18FED2.SGM 18FED2 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 32 / Thursday, February 18, 2016 / Presidential Documents 8383 existing authorization boundary, of existing water resource, flood control, utility, pipeline, or telecommunications facilities that are located within the monument. Existing water resource, flood control, utility, pipeline, or telecommunications facilities located within the monument may be expanded, and new facilities may be constructed within the monument, to the extent consistent with the proper care and management of the objects identified above. This proclamation does not alter or affect the valid existing water rights of any party, including the United States. This proclamation does not reserve water as a matter of Federal law. Except for emergency or authorized administrative purposes, motorized vehicle use in the monument shall be permitted only on roads existing as of the date of this proclamation. Non-motorized mechanized vehicle use shall be permitted only on roads and trails designated for their use consistent with the care and management of the objects identified above. Nothing in this proclamation shall be deemed to enlarge or diminish the rights of any Indian tribe. The Secretaries shall, to the maximum extent permitted by law and in consultation with Indian tribes, ensure the protection of Indian sacred sites and traditional cultural properties in the monument and provide access by members of Indian tribes for traditional cultural and customary uses, consistent with the American Indian Religious Freedom Act (42 U.S.C. 1996) and Executive Order 13007 of May 24, 1996 (Indian Sacred Sites). Nothing in this proclamation shall preclude low level overflights of military aircraft, the designation of new units of special use airspace, the use or establishment of military flight training routes over the lands reserved by this proclamation, or related military uses, consistent with the care and management of the objects identified above. Nothing in this proclamation shall be deemed to enlarge or diminish the jurisdiction of the State of California, including its jurisdiction and authority with respect to fish and wildlife management. Nothing in this proclamation shall be construed to alter the authority or responsibility of any party with respect to emergency response activities within the monument, including wildland fire response. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with D2 Nothing in this proclamation shall be deemed to revoke any existing withdrawal, reservation, or appropriation; however, the monument shall be the dominant reservation. VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:18 Feb 17, 2016 Jkt 238001 PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\18FED2.SGM 18FED2 8384 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 32 / Thursday, February 18, 2016 / Presidential Documents Warning is hereby given to all unauthorized persons not to appropriate, injure, destroy, or remove any feature of the monument and not to locate or settle upon any of the lands thereof. IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twelfth day of February, in the year of our Lord two thousand sixteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth. VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:18 Feb 17, 2016 Jkt 238001 PO 00000 Frm 00006 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\18FED2.SGM 18FED2 OB#1.EPS</GPH> mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with D2 Billing code 3295–F6–P mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with D2 Jkt 238001 PO 00000 Frm 00007 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\18FED2.SGM 18FED2 - USFS Mderness - NPS Wlldeme$$ SMiles 2.5 1:72,000 Sand to Snow National Monument Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 32 / Thursday, February 18, 2016 / Presidential Documents [FR Doc. 2016–03548 Filed 2–17–16; 11:15 am] 20:18 Feb 17, 2016 Billing code 4310–10–C VerDate Sep<11>2014 8385 ED18FE16.002</GPH> Sand toSnow Nationai Monument W.E 0 s

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[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 32 (Thursday, February 18, 2016)]
[Presidential Documents]
[Pages 8379-8385]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-03548]




                        Presidential Documents 



Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 32 / Thursday, February 18, 2016 / 
Presidential Documents

[[Page 8379]]


                Proclamation 9396 of February 12, 2016

                
Establishment of the Sand to Snow National 
                Monument

                By the President of the United States of America

                A Proclamation

                The Sand to Snow area of southern California is an 
                ecological and cultural treasure, a microcosm of the 
                great geographic diversity of the region. Rising from 
                the floor of the Sonoran Desert to the tallest peak in 
                southern California, the area features a remarkable 
                diversity of plant and animal species. The area 
                includes a portion of the San Bernardino National 
                Forest and connects this area with Joshua Tree National 
                Park to the east, knitting together a mosaic of 
                spectacular landscapes stretching over 200 miles. The 
                mountain peaks of the Sand to Snow area frame the 
                northeastern reach of Coachella Valley along with the 
                Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument 
                to the south. Home to desert oases at Big Morongo 
                Canyon and Whitewater Canyon, the area serves as a 
                refuge for desert dwelling animals and a stopover for 
                migrating birds. The archaeological riches of the Black 
                Lava Buttes and the historical remains of mining and 
                ranching communities tell of past prosperity and 
                struggle in this arid land. The unbroken expanse is an 
                invaluable treasure for our Nation and will continue to 
                serve as an irreplaceable resource for archaeologists, 
                geologists, and biologists for generations to come.

                The Sand to Snow area encompasses a rich diversity of 
                geological and ecological resources, including a nearly 
                10,000-foot elevation gradient from the Sonoran Desert 
                floor to the top of the 11,500-foot San Gorgonio 
                Mountain, the highest mountain in southern California. 
                From the flat desert lowlands, the mountains thrust 
                upward in stark relief, creating indelible beauty along 
                with a unique diversity of resources and a rich history 
                of human habitation and movement. Along this remarkable 
                topographic gradient lies an unusually wide range of 
                ecosystems, ranging from lowland Mojave and Colorado 
                deserts to scrub and woodlands and Mediterranean 
                chaparral to subalpine and alpine conifer forests. San 
                Gorgonio Mountain is one end of the longest recorded 
                line of sight in the lower 48 States, the other being 
                Mount Whitney, 190 miles away. In addition, the Henry 
                Washington Survey Marker, located on San Bernardino 
                Peak, serves as the starting point for surveying land 
                in southern California and is included on the National 
                Register of Historic Places.

                San Gorgonio, so named after Saint Gorgonius by early 
                17th century Spanish missionaries, is just one name for 
                this remarkable, region-defining mountain. The Cahuilla 
                Indians call the mountain Kwiria-Kaich, which means 
                ``bald'' or ``smooth,'' and consider it among the 
                sacred peaks of southern California. The Gabrielino 
                Indians from the Los Angeles Basin treat San Gorgonio 
                Mountain with reverence and refer to it as Akvangna. 
                The Luise[ntilde]o Indians consider San Gorgonio 
                Mountain sacred and the older brother of Mount San 
                Jacinto; both peaks were among the first born of Earth 
                Mother. The Luise[ntilde]o refer to San Gorgonio 
                Mountain as Pewipwi.

                Thirty miles of the world famous Pacific Crest National 
                Scenic Trail run through the Sand to Snow area, 
                climbing 7,000 feet from the desert of Whitewater 
                Canyon to Mission Springs in the San Bernardino 
                National Forest. The history of this renowned trail 
                dates back to the 1920s when the idea of a border-to-
                border trail was first conceptualized. Although the

[[Page 8380]]

                establishment of the trail took decades to fully 
                materialize, today the trail is a national icon, 
                highlighting the wilderness treasures of the American 
                West. Since its completion, over 3,000 people have 
                hiked the 2,600 miles of continuous trail along the 
                Pacific crest, including the Mission Creek Canyon 
                segment found within the Sand to Snow area.

                The Sand to Snow area first took its current shape 175 
                million years ago with the subduction of the Pacific 
                Plate beneath the North American Plate. The San 
                Bernardino Mountain range in the western half of the 
                Sand to Snow area is unusual in California, a 
                transverse range as distinct from the north-south 
                mountain ranges found through most of California. This 
                difference in direction results from a change in the 
                San Andreas Fault, which shifts direction to the west 
                of the Sand to Snow area. This intersection of 
                mountains makes this area a critical bridge for 
                wildlife traversing the high elevations of southern 
                California's desert landscape.

                Two branches of the San Andreas Fault run through the 
                Sand to Snow area, and the faulting that created the 
                mountains and canyons throughout this landscape also 
                created the Morongo Valley. The Whitewater Canyon area 
                has been featured in numerous studies of the plate 
                tectonics and geologic rifting of southern California, 
                including studies that examine the impact of 
                earthquakes on fault stability. The San Bernardino 
                Mountains and Big Morongo Canyon contain ancient rocks 
                from the Proterozoic Eon, along with some of the oldest 
                exposed rocks in California, nearly 2 billion years 
                old. Granite, gneiss, and schist in these areas have 
                been used by geologists to better understand the 
                tectonic history of the region, and are a testament to 
                the area's important geologic past.

                Covering a range of nearly 10,000 feet in elevation, 
                the Sand to Snow area includes an extraordinarily 
                diverse range of ecosystems from lowland deserts, fresh 
                water marshes, and Mojave riparian forests, to creosote 
                bush scrub ecosystems, and alpine peaks. Hundreds of 
                springs rise to the surface at South Fork Meadows, the 
                origin of the South Fork of the Santa Ana River. The 
                Sand to Snow area has been important to biological and 
                ecological research, as well as studies of climate and 
                land use change, the impact of fires and invasive 
                species management.

                The area has a remarkable species richness that makes 
                it one of most biodiverse areas in southern California. 
                The area is home to 12 federally listed threatened and 
                endangered animal species. Species include the 
                endangered peninsular bighorn sheep, San Bernardino 
                Merriam's kangaroo rat, Arroyo toad, Mountain Yellow-
                legged frog, and unarmored threespine stickleback, as 
                well as the threatened Santa Ana sucker, Coachella 
                Valley fringe-toed lizard, and desert tortoise.

                A tremendous diversity of other wildlife species also 
                make their homes here. In the San Gorgonio Wilderness, 
                black bears, mountain lions, bobcats, mule deer, and 
                bighorn sheep can all be found. Species such as 
                ringtails, kit fox, striped skunk, California ground 
                squirrel, blacktail jackrabbit, and 19 species of bat 
                live in the Big Morongo Canyon Preserve. Amphibians and 
                reptiles including the Mohave Rattlesnake, red diamond 
                rattlesnake, rosy boa, desert spiny lizard, California 
                kingsnake, Western whiptail, and Pacific tree frog also 
                live in the Sand to Snow area.

                The Sand to Snow area is famous for its oases 
                frequented by over 240 species of birds, including the 
                endangered Least Bell's vireo, southwestern willow 
                flycatcher, and Yuma clapper rail, as well as the 
                threatened coastal California gnatcatcher. Big Morongo 
                Canyon, characterized by steep canyons, rugged terrain, 
                and desert oases, is particularly high in biodiversity 
                and is among the largest desert riparian habitats in 
                California. It has been recognized as among the most 
                important avian habitats in the State. Common birds 
                found at Big Morongo Canyon include shore birds like 
                the American white pelican, great blue heron, and green 
                heron, raptors such as the Swainson's hawk, Northern 
                Harrier, and American kestrel, owls, including the 
                western screech-owl and great horned owl, and 
                hummingbirds, woodpeckers, vireos, and finches. 
                Additionally, 32 species of migratory birds

[[Page 8381]]

                of conservation concern have been identified in the 
                Sand to Snow area, including eagles, sparrows, owls, 
                hummingbirds, woodpeckers, and falcons, among others.

                The Sand to Snow area is home to dozens of native plant 
                species, including 14 federally listed threatened or 
                endangered species of flowering plants. These include 
                the endangered California dandelion, Coachella Valley 
                milk-vetch, Cushenbury buckwheat, Cushenbury oxytheca, 
                pedate checker-mallow, San Bernardino bluegrass, San 
                Bernardino Mountains bladderpod, Santa Ana River 
                woolly-star, slender-petaled mustard, and triple-ribbed 
                milk-vetch and the threatened ash-grey paintbrush, Bear 
                Valley sandwort, Parish's daisy, and Southern Mountain 
                wild-buckwheat. The southern-most stand of quaking 
                aspen trees is located here as are important stands of 
                white fir and bigcone Douglas-fir.

                The human history of the Sand to Snow area extends back 
                thousands of years. People now identified as part of 
                the Takic subset of the large Uto-Aztecan group of 
                Native Americans arrived in the region around 2,500 
                years ago. Ancient people of the area used a wide 
                variety of plants from both the mountains and the 
                Mojave desert, such as honey mesquite, oak, 
                pi[ntilde]on, cactus fruits, yucca roots, and tubers as 
                well as grasses, seeds, and berries. Common tools were 
                made of wood, bone, shell, stone, clay, and plant 
                fibers. These people also manufactured woven goods, 
                pipes made of stone, awls made of bone, tools 
                associated with archery, and fire drills. They made 
                coiled basketry and simple undecorated ceramic pots 
                used for storage and transport.

                The name ``Serrano'' was given to people living in the 
                Sand to Snow area by the Spanish missionaries in the 
                late 18th century and translates from Spanish as a 
                ``person from the mountains.'' In 1834, the Spanish 
                forcibly relocated many Serrano people to the missions. 
                In 1840 the Serrano suffered a devastating smallpox 
                outbreak, and the disease returned in 1860. Ruth 
                Benedict, one of the world's foremost cultural 
                anthropologists, studied the Serrano extensively in 
                1924. However, by this time there were few remaining 
                eastern groups and no old shamans or priests survived. 
                Today, the rich archaeological resources in this area 
                serve to preserve the history of the Serrano people. 
                Black Lava Butte, topped by distinctive basaltic lava 
                flows, is sacred to the Serrano Tribe and home to a 
                substantial number of archaeological sites, including 
                evidence of habitation, rock art, and possible ritual 
                activities. Black Lava Butte contains an estimated 
                1,700 distinct petroglyphs, most of which have not yet 
                been studied and may provide insight into the history 
                of the Serrano and other tribes in the region. The mesa 
                also contains dozens of isolated grinding and milling 
                sites and at least one shelter site, where many milling 
                stones are present.

                After the Holcomb Valley gold rush of 1860, ranchers 
                used the area for grazing sheep, horses, and cattle. 
                Many of the ranchers kept their herds at lower 
                elevations during the winter and drove their stock to 
                the meadows of the San Bernardino Mountains to graze 
                during the summer months. Old cattle paths, watering 
                holes, and campsites remain a part of the landscape 
                today. Although not particularly successful, many 
                miners prospected in the southeastern portions of the 
                San Bernardino Mountains. Evidence still remains in the 
                form of old cabins, mine shafts, prospecting pits, and 
                refuse deposits.

                The protection of the Sand to Snow area will preserve 
                its cultural, prehistoric, and historic legacy and 
                maintain its diverse array of natural and scientific 
                resources, ensuring that the historic and scientific 
                values of this area remain for the benefit of all 
                Americans. In addition to its significant scientific 
                and historic values, the area also provides world class 
                outdoor recreation opportunities, including hunting, 
                fishing, hiking, camping, mountain biking, and 
                horseback riding.

                WHEREAS, section 320301 of title 54, United States Code 
                (known as the ``Antiquities Act''), authorizes the 
                President, in his discretion, to declare

[[Page 8382]]

                by public proclamation historic landmarks, historic and 
                prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic 
                or scientific interest that are situated upon the lands 
                owned or controlled by the Federal Government to be 
                national monuments, and to reserve as a part thereof 
                parcels of land, the limits of which in all cases shall 
                be confined to the smallest area compatible with the 
                proper care and management of the objects to be 
                protected;

                WHEREAS, it is in the public interest to preserve the 
                objects of scientific and historic interest on the Sand 
                to Snow lands;

                NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the 
                United States of America, by the authority vested in me 
                by section 320301 of title 54, United States Code, 
                hereby proclaim the objects identified above that are 
                situated upon lands and interests in lands owned or 
                controlled by the Federal Government to be the Sand to 
                Snow National Monument (monument) and, for the purpose 
                of protecting those objects, reserve as part thereof 
                all lands and interests in lands owned or controlled by 
                the Federal Government within the boundaries described 
                on the accompanying map, which is attached to and forms 
                a part of this proclamation. These reserved Federal 
                lands and interests in lands encompass approximately 
                154,000 acres. The boundaries described on the 
                accompanying map are confined to the smallest area 
                compatible with the proper care and management of the 
                objects to be protected.

                All Federal lands and interests in lands within the 
                boundaries of the monument are hereby appropriated and 
                withdrawn from all forms of entry, location, selection, 
                sale, or other disposition under the public land laws 
                or laws applicable to the U.S. Forest Service, from 
                location, entry, and patent under the mining laws, and 
                from disposition under all laws relating to mineral and 
                geothermal leasing, other than by exchange that 
                furthers the protective purposes of the monument.

                The establishment of the monument is subject to valid 
                existing rights. If the Federal Government acquires any 
                lands or interests in lands not owned or controlled by 
                the Federal Government within the boundaries described 
                on the accompanying map, such lands and interests in 
                lands shall be reserved as a part of the monument, and 
                objects identified above that are situated upon those 
                lands and interests in lands shall be part of the 
                monument, upon acquisition of ownership or control by 
                the Federal Government.

                The Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of the 
                Interior (Secretaries) shall manage the monument 
                through the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) and the Bureau 
                of Land Management (BLM), pursuant to their respective 
                applicable legal authorities, to implement the purposes 
                of this proclamation. The USFS shall manage that 
                portion of the monument within the boundaries of the 
                National Forest System (NFS), and BLM shall manage the 
                remainder of the monument. The lands administered by 
                USFS shall be managed as part of the San Bernardino 
                National Forest. The lands administered by BLM shall be 
                managed as a unit of the National Landscape 
                Conservation System, pursuant to applicable legal 
                authorities.

                For purposes of protecting and restoring the objects 
                identified above, the Secretaries shall jointly prepare 
                a management plan for the monument and shall promulgate 
                such regulations for its management as deemed 
                appropriate. In developing any management plans and any 
                management rules and regulations governing NFS lands 
                within the monument, the Secretary of Agriculture, 
                through USFS, shall consult with the Secretary of the 
                Interior through BLM. The Secretaries shall provide for 
                public involvement in the development of the management 
                plan including, but not limited to, consultation with 
                tribal, State, and local governments. In the 
                development and implementation of the management plan, 
                the Secretaries shall maximize opportunities, pursuant 
                to applicable legal authorities, for shared resources, 
                operational efficiency, and cooperation.

                Nothing in this proclamation shall be construed to 
                interfere with the operation or maintenance, or with 
                the replacement or modification within the

[[Page 8383]]

                existing authorization boundary, of existing water 
                resource, flood control, utility, pipeline, or 
                telecommunications facilities that are located within 
                the monument. Existing water resource, flood control, 
                utility, pipeline, or telecommunications facilities 
                located within the monument may be expanded, and new 
                facilities may be constructed within the monument, to 
                the extent consistent with the proper care and 
                management of the objects identified above. This 
                proclamation does not alter or affect the valid 
                existing water rights of any party, including the 
                United States. This proclamation does not reserve water 
                as a matter of Federal law.

                Except for emergency or authorized administrative 
                purposes, motorized vehicle use in the monument shall 
                be permitted only on roads existing as of the date of 
                this proclamation. Non-motorized mechanized vehicle use 
                shall be permitted only on roads and trails designated 
                for their use consistent with the care and management 
                of the objects identified above.

                Nothing in this proclamation shall be deemed to enlarge 
                or diminish the rights of any Indian tribe. The 
                Secretaries shall, to the maximum extent permitted by 
                law and in consultation with Indian tribes, ensure the 
                protection of Indian sacred sites and traditional 
                cultural properties in the monument and provide access 
                by members of Indian tribes for traditional cultural 
                and customary uses, consistent with the American Indian 
                Religious Freedom Act (42 U.S.C. 1996) and Executive 
                Order 13007 of May 24, 1996 (Indian Sacred Sites).

                Nothing in this proclamation shall preclude low level 
                overflights of military aircraft, the designation of 
                new units of special use airspace, the use or 
                establishment of military flight training routes over 
                the lands reserved by this proclamation, or related 
                military uses, consistent with the care and management 
                of the objects identified above.

                Nothing in this proclamation shall be deemed to enlarge 
                or diminish the jurisdiction of the State of 
                California, including its jurisdiction and authority 
                with respect to fish and wildlife management.

                Nothing in this proclamation shall be construed to 
                alter the authority or responsibility of any party with 
                respect to emergency response activities within the 
                monument, including wildland fire response.

                Nothing in this proclamation shall be deemed to revoke 
                any existing withdrawal, reservation, or appropriation; 
                however, the monument shall be the dominant 
                reservation.

[[Page 8384]]

                Warning is hereby given to all unauthorized persons not 
                to appropriate, injure, destroy, or remove any feature 
                of the monument and not to locate or settle upon any of 
                the lands thereof.

                IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this 
                twelfth day of February, in the year of our Lord two 
                thousand sixteen, and of the Independence of the United 
                States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
                
                
                    (Presidential Sig.)

Billing code 3295-F6-P


[[Page 8385]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TD18FE16.002


[FR Doc. 2016-03548
Filed 2-17-16; 11:15 am]
Billing code 4310-10-C