Rancho Guejito, the best preserved, intact Mexican land grant in Southern California, and an unparalleled example of our historic landscape, has been proposed for massive development by its new owners. However, their call for annexation by the City of Escondido produced a public outcry.

Located in northern San Diego County, and over 21,000 acres in size, this ranch is one of the most important properties in the entire state. Its historic, Native American, and biological values are enormous, and its vast solitude and beauty are legendary. A stronghold of the endangered arroyo toad, endangered Stephens’ kangaroo rat, the rare Engelmann Oak, and regionally declining golden eagle, it is a cornerstone for the upcoming North County Multiple Species Conservation Plan. Remote and deficient in infrastructure, it is completely unsuited for development.

In two newspaper opinion pieces, San Diego County Supervisor Bill Horn pointed out problems in annexation and the opportunity for the family members who inherited the land to seek acquisition funds and put a legacy in place. EHL echoed these views in another opinion piece (also see EHL in the News).

EHL helped organize a letter from 26 environmental, historic, Native American, scientific, and civic groups that called for the protection of this iconic landscape. The letter was sent to all San Diego County federal, state, and local elected officials.