The Montini Open Space Preserve was established in December 2005. Since its inception in 1990, the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District sought to protect the preserve because of the its scenic prominence, its role in the history of California, its proximity to the Vallejo Home (Sonoma State Historic Park), and its ability to provide a pleasant and strikingly scenic hike within a short distance of Sonoma’s historic Plaza. The Preserve is visible from much of the city of Sonoma and serves as an important backdrop contributing to the community identity of Sonoma.
The oak woodlands and grasslands of the Preserve provide homes for plants and animals that are important for preserving the natural heritage of Sonoma County. Red-shouldered hawks, red-tailed hawks, acorn woodpeckers, and pileated woodpeckers can be seen and heard throughout the preserve. In spring, new fawns have been found lying in their grassy beds beneath the oak thickets. In spring, ephemeral streams and bountiful wildflowers embellish the hillsides.
The preserve was purchased by General Vallejo who used it for grazing and rock (basalt) extraction until the 1934. In 1934, the Montini family acquired the property from General Vallejo’s heirs and the property was used from that time until the present for cattle grazing.
- Enjoy the spectacular views from the Preserve—you can see all the way out to San Pablo Bay and beyond
- Be on the lookout for other District- protected properties while visiting this hike—Sonoma Mountain can be seen from Montini Open Space Preserve
- Listen and you might hear the cry of a red-shouldered hawk
- The rock that you see was quarried at the turn of the 20th century. Much of the rock was transported to San Francisco and was used to make streets.