About Luna

Luna’s current condition
Sanctuary Forest, a nonprofit land trust based in Humboldt County, CA, is the keeper of the Luna Land Trust. They monitor Luna on a monthly basis – and once a year do a full analysis of how Luna is doing. Go to Sanctuary Forest’s website to learn more: http://sanctuaryforest.org/

Luna’s history
For 738 days forest activist Julia Butterfly Hill lived 180 feet high in the canopy of an ancient redwood tree to help make the world aware of the plight of ancient forests. Julia, with great help from steelworkers and environmentalists, successfully negotiated to permanently protect the tree and a nearly three-acre buffer zone. She came down to a world that recognized her as a heroine and powerful voice for the environment. Julia’s occupation of the over 1,000-year-old tree known as Luna, is only a part of the actions taken over many many years to save Headwaters Forest and the three percent of the ancient redwood ecosystem that remains. Luna’s hillside is where a massive ‘debris torrent’ originated that destroyed seven homes in Stafford, California. Seeing the mudslide scar from Julia’s treetop perspective was a daily reminder that the health of our forests and watersheds directly affects our lives. Luna stands as a beacon of hope, showing that individuals and communities can speak out against corporate irresponsibility. Luna reminds us to stand up for our own survival and for the future of our shared planet

Where is Luna?
Luna stands tall on a ridge above the town of Stafford, California. You can see her from Highway 101 near the Stafford exit, looking southwest.

Who attends to Luna today?
In December of 1999, Sanctuary Forest worked closely with Pacific Lumber Company and Julia Butterfly Hill to negotiate the agreement that protects Luna. Sanctuary Forest served as the bridge, facilitating the agreement between Pacific Lumber Company and Julia, who was at the time perched two hundred feet above the earth on a six by eight foot platform. Sanctuary Forest agreed to become the trustee for Luna’s conservation easement. Sanctuary Forest is serving as the guardian of Luna and holds the Deed of Covenant, a legal agreement that contains the details of the conservation easement designed to protect Luna and a surrounding two-acre buffer zone. Sanctuary Forest is a non-profit land trust located within the temperate rainforest of the headwaters of the Mattole River on California’s northern coast. Sanctuary Forest provides permanent protection for ecologically sensitive lands, enriching the positive relationship between these lands and our communities for future generations. Visit sanctuaryforest.org.

Can I visit Luna?
Luna sits on land that is protected under a preservation agreement. The parcel is surrounded by Pacific Lumber property and would require trespassing in order to get to Luna. As part of the agreement, we can’t encourage people to visit Luna. There are no public routes into Luna. We are also concerned for Luna’s well-being, as foot traffic over her root system would increase soil erosion and add to her vulnerability.

Inspired by Julia’s treesit in Luna, Courtney Dowe wrote and sings this beautiful song. Courtney has generously agreed to let this song be downloaded for a donation. All proceeds will go to Sanctuary Forest for the Luna Protection Fund which cares for Luna and the surrounding grove. Thank you for your support of Luna.

Visit the California redwoods

There are places to camp in and around state parks with beautiful old-growth redwoods. You can camp at Richardson Grove on Highway 101 just south of Garberville and visit several redwood groves along the Avenue of the Giants, just south of Stafford on Highway 101. Also, a jewel that’s very accessible and remarkably untouched is Whittemore Grove. It’s located just outside Redway on Briceland Road. Another place to be with nature is California’s “Lost Coast” – the King Range National Conservation Area and the Sinkyone Wilderness. It was here among the unspoiled natural beauty that Julia first felt called to protect the ancient forests. It is home to several magnificent ancient redwood groves, including the Sally Bell Grove, site of a decade-earlier showdown between lumber greed and environmentalists.