Saving the Marin-Sonoma Coast

How is it possible that we may cross the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco’s human beehive and within minutes enter a natural paradise extending hundreds of miles up the coast? What miracle saved these coastal ranges, rivers and bays – alive with rare plant and wildlife – from the overdevelopment that devastated the coast of Southern California?

The dramatic story of the salvation of these wild headlands unfolds in Marty Griffin’s fascinating memoir, Saving the Marin-Sonoma Coast. With sharp insight and humor Dr. Griffin documents the creation of the magnificent Audubon Canyon Ranch wildlife preserves on Bolinas Lagoon and Tomales Bay, and their crucial role in rescuing the Point Reyes National Seashore, preserving California’s unspoiled North Coast, and transforming the political landscape of Marin County.

From the first campaigns begun in the drawing rooms of Marin’s patrician families, to save San Francisco Bay to today’s grassroots efforts to restore the nation’s watersheds, Dr. Griffin captures the passion and daring that succeeded in defending wildlife habitats, defeating runaway growth, and opening the door to a new environmental ethic.

you can use this book’s techniques & tools to
save open space in your area

Be bold about saving your county ‹ see PART ONE
Start an environmental organization ‹ see PART TWO
Raise money to preserve land ‹ see PART TWO
Impact your local politics ‹ see PART THREE
Transform your county ‹ see PART THREE
Save your water ‹ see PART FOUR


From this website you can download pdfs of the book (including 189 photographs and graphics and 23 original maps) section by section.
Saving the Marin-Sonoma Coast is also available at the Audubon Canyon Ranch.

“Water is the most critical resource issue of our lifetime and our
children’s lifetime. The health of our waters is the principle
measure of how we live on the land, watershed by watershed.”

— Luna Leopold, Professor and Hydrologist, UC Berkeley

Start or Join an environmental organization