Harvey and Gladys Nyland Property

Harvey and Gladys Nyland Property featured image

The Harvey and Gladys Nyland Property sits just outside the City of San Juan Bautista and is a space that’s steeped in history. The 540-acres of oak-studded grasslands, wetlands, and seasonal streams once supported the indigenous Amah Mutsun people who were taken to this mission and other missions as part of the Spanish conquest of California. The property, which is currently a cattle ranch, is still largely intact and cattle still graze on the property as they did hundreds of years ago. It’s also a vital wildlife corridor, with concrete culverts under the Highway 156 providing safe passage between the property and open grasslands to the north. The Harvey and Gladys Nyland Property is home to raptors, grassland birds, and waterfowl along with mountain lions, black bears and bobcats. But with over nearly 2 miles of frontage along Highway 156, the property was both highly scenic and vulnerable to development.

When the property’s 4th generation owners decided to sell the ranch, they reached out to The Trust for Public Land in hopes of ensuring its continued health and historic ranching uses. We teamed up with San Benito Agricultural Land Trust, Amah Mutsun Land Trust, and Land Trust of Santa Cruz County to work together to ensure the permanent protection and stewardship of the land. The four organizations agreed to collaborate on a joint management plan for the ranch that will provide public trails, sustainable cattle grazing, promote indigenous land stewardship practices, including cultural burning, and preserve the property’s diverse ecological, historic, and wildlife values for future generations to enjoy.