Redwood National Park was not always the internationally-celebrated recluse for nature lovers that we know it as today. The Lyons Ranches Historic District is comprised of lands historically managed by the Lyons family. The extended Lyons family operated ranches in the Bald Hills for 89 years and donated the land in 1959. According to the National Park Service, this district is significant because of its contributions to Humbolt County’s sheep production economy, as well as for facilitating relationships between Indigenous peoples and Euro-American immigrants in the area. According to the NPS, the Lyons Ranches district is “a rare intact example of a large-scale sheep ranch that was active from the late nineteenth through the mid-twentieth centuries. It retains both the natural features (such as prairie grasslands) that contributed to its suitability for sheep ranching as well as for Native American cultural events, and the key manmade features (such as roads, barns, and sheep sheds) that were essential to the sheep ranching operations.”
HistoriCorps often works on individual historic buildings – rarely do we get to work on the buildings and structures that comprise an entire historic district! At the Lyons Ranches, we will work on two barns and a sheep shed which overlook Redwood Creek and Coyote Creek valleys in the park. The Home Place Barn, constructed in 1899, is the oldest remaining structure in the historic district. As one would expect, the barn was originally constructed of old-growth redwood and fir from the properties that were hand-split and hewn. The Long Ridge Sheep Shed was built sometime before 1914 as one of the shelters to protect sheep, and hay, over winter. The Coyote Creek Barn was built in the late 1930s to shelter sheep at the edge of another large meadow. All are ready for some HistoriCorps TLC!
Learn more about the history of Lyons Ranches from the National Park Service .
PROJECT PARTNER: Redwood National Park
SESSION DATES: June 13-18, June 20-25, June 27 – July 2, July 11-16
Please plan to arrive at our campsite no earlier than 6pm and no later than 8pm on the first day of your session.
Tent camping only; those with truck bed campers or similar can also access this site. There are RV sites in the vicinity but volunteers will need to make their own reservations.
- Map to Campground
- Map from Campground to Lyons Ranches
- Note: The last mile into our jobsite is pretty rough; 4WD/AWD is recommended but not necessary. Volunteers can opt to carpool. All will need to walk the final 200 yards into the jobsite. Please ensure your physical fitness is adequate for this daily short hike!
ABOUT VOLUNTEERING: HistoriCorps projects are free for volunteers! HistoriCorps will provide all meals, tools, training, and equipment, and a campsite. Volunteers are responsible for their own transportation to the campsite, sleeping equipment, work clothes and boots, and other personal gear.