Back to All Events


Fort Ross Visitor Center Auditorium

The Farallon Islands stand sentinel thirty miles west of the Golden Gate, their latest stop on a two-hundred-and-fifty-one-million year journey across ancient seas and prehistoric mountains. These islands have evolved to become a vital bastion for the diverse fauna of the North Pacific, and it's this diversity that has attracted adventurers, explorers, laborers and profiteers alike.The Farallons served as hunting grounds for ambitious fleets of Bostonians and they were Russia's established eastern border at its zenith, during which time they brought Alaska Native hunters and the first scientific observers to the islands. Russians and later Americans decimated both the pinniped and bird populations over the decades, and later the U.S. Navy base brought in invasive species to the Island. Starting in the 1960s America began to reconsider its relationship to nature and the Farallons were among the first locations to be handed over to conservation; soon birds thought extinct returned and the first fur seals since the early nineteenth century have been born. The islands now serve as a protected wilderness.

Please join National Wildlife Refuge System Ranger Jose Garcia in a presentation and discussion about the Farallons past and its future, including photos of the Russian-era structures still visible on the island. This presentation will cover:

  • Geologic formation of the Islands,

  • Faunal evolution,

  • First Human impacts,

  • The Alaska Natives and the edge of Russian empire, and Russian administration of the Islands,

  • Eminent domain or Eggers Rights, early U.S. administration of the Islands,

  • Age of neglect,

  • First conservation efforts, and the long road to recovery,

  • The wilderness act & methods used for recovery,

  • The future of the island and the North Pacific.

This event is sponsored by Fort Ross Conservancy. No special event fees required but CSP gate fees ($8/car) still apply. However, donations to Fort Ross Conservancy greatly appreciated.

Earlier Event: March 5
Fort Ross Sea Survey
Later Event: March 12
Hitchcock Film Festival - March 12th