Mendocino Land Trust

Working with you to conserve the land
while there's still time...

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  • Matt Coleman Bench at Big River

  • Deborah Bove Bench at Navarro Point

  • Art and Jean Morley Bench at Caspar Uplands

  • Grail Dawson and Betty Barber Bench at Mendocino Bay Overlook

  • Gordon McBride Bench at Hare Creek

  • Phyllis Curtis Bench at Pelican Bluffs

  • Bruce and Kay Risley Bench at Pelican Bluffs

Find Our Benches

We have benches at several of our coastal preserves and trails. The benches are as unique as the individuals they honor, and each offers a place to rest, reflect and enjoy the view. If you are interested in placing a commemorative bench, please read our Frequently Asked Questions and contact our office.

Bruce and Kay Risley Bench

Pelican Bluffs is a truly spectacular section of the California coastline. Now, thanks to the new bench donated by Beth and Virgil Knoche in honor of Beth's parents, Bruce and Kay Risley, there is another comfortable place for anyone to sit and rest and savor the view. This is the second commemorative bench to be located at Pelican Bluffs. These benches are invaluable to making this trail more accessible to people who have difficulty sustaining their energy for the full length of the hike. This was very important to Beth and Virgil as the effects of Parkinson's disease limit Virgil's mobility. Beth describes her parents as having been "admired for their kindness, energy and love of humanity... When they died their ashes were scattered in the ocean they loved." What a lovely tribute this bench is to that history of kindness and generosity. Pelican Bluffs is owned and managed by Mendocino Land Trust.


Phyllis Curtis Bench

Phyllis Curtis is the volunteer director of the Inland Mendocino Land Trust and the whole community is so grateful for her years of dedicated service to land conservation. We were honored to dedicate a bench to all her good work. Phyllis's bench will be a special place for people to sit and enjoy the sweeping landscape for generations to come. This bench is located along the Pelican Bluff trail, just outside of the City of Point Arena. Pelican Bluffs is owned and managed by Mendocino Land Trust.

Gordon E. McBride Bench

This bench is located along the Hare Creek Beach trail, just outside of the City of Fort Bragg.  It’s a semicircular bench made from local cypress wood by woodworker Greg Smith.  On the bench is a plaque inviting you to “Please, sit down” -- in Gordon’s native Finnish.  Hare Creek Beach is owned and managed by Mendocino Land Trust in memory of Gordon, who grew up in Fort Bragg and was a well-known and respected botanist and nature lover. 


Art and Jean Morley Bench

Art Morley is alive and well, though Jean passed away in 2014 .  This bench can be found on the Caspar Uplands Trail, which was built by Mendocino Land Trust, and is now part of the Caspar Beach State Park.  It’s made from old-growth redwood salvaged from the Pudding Creek trestle, designed and built by woodworker Greg Smith.


Matthew Coleman Bench

Matt was a much-loved employee of Mendocino Land Trust, who died tragically in 2011.  His Land Trust work focused on stewarding and caring for Big River and the land around it; a beautiful bench (also made by woodworker Greg Smith) dedicated to his memory sits high above the north bank of this river, looking out over the estuary.  It’s a great place to bird-watch and remember Matt.


Deborah Bove Bench

Deborah had a long career at the California Coastal Commission, and she devoted her life to protecting the California Coast.  This driftwood bench overlooks the Pacific at Navarro Point, with stunning views of flowers and the ocean below. 


Grail Dawson and Betty Barber Bench

Dedicated to Mendocino Land Trust for over 40 years, Betty Barber and Grail Dawson both served many years on the Board and as President for multiple terms.  The coastal access easement overlooking Big River Beach provides the very best view of the town of Mendocino. This easement was accepted and developed by Mendocino Land Trust during Betty and Grail's tenure. It was one of Mendocino Land Trust's first public access easements. The bench is used by residents and visitors who want to enjoy the tranquillity of the ocean scene, take family photos or attend one of the frequent weddings held at the site.

Explore and celebrate the land with us...