The Young Pisgah Mountain property adjoins Pisgah National Forest just a mile north of the Blue Ridge Parkway in the Upper Hominy Creek Valley of southwest Buncombe County. This 102-acre conservation easement conserves habitat in an important wildlife corridor, in a network of other protected areas such as Chestnut Mountain and the tracts being secured for the new Pisgah View State Park.
“The tract at Young Pisgah Mountain is connected to a large block of protected land in the Balsam Mountains including Mount Pisgah and the Shining Rock Wilderness, which contain many biologically significant destinations,” says Land Protection Director Michelle Pugliese. “It has been a long-term project and we are grateful for the landowners’ commitment in protecting this special place. They first approached SAHC in 2010 about potentially conserving the land, and we are thrilled to have purchased the conservation easement this summer.”
Five headwater streams flow through the property into a tributary of Beaverdam Creek, and American chestnut trees have been found on the ridge. The land shares a rich history of well-known names in the region. Part of land once owned by Edith Vanderbilt, it is visible in distant mountain views from the Grove Park Inn.
Purchase of this conservation easement was made possible by a generous contribution from Brad & Shelli Stanback, support from SAHC members, $40,000 grant from Buncombe County, and a donation of part of the conservation easement value by the landowner.
Landowner Perspective: Septimbor Lim, founder of Sacred Mountain Sanctuary
We wanted to preserve this incredible wild space because it contains many intact microbiomes, land features, and species that are precious to me as someone who grew up in the Southern Appalachian mountains. Our School of Living Arts hosts a learning environment for cradle-to-grave experience of nature. We believe in protecting land as a sacred context for all life. Human interaction with nature is so important – particularly when that interaction does not treat nature as a commodity. Our model leaves the land as intact as possible, calibrating human interaction to create a feeling of love and wonder that stays with you for all time. Ultimately, it’s about human beings interacting with nature, and holding a piece of land in a regenerative way that enriches and nourishes it.
More info at solaschooloflivingarts.org