Avawatz Mountains Proposed Wilderness
The California Desert Conservation and Recreation Act would add 87,700 acres in the Avawatz Mountains Wilderness Study Area to the national wilderness protection system.
Rising to more than 6,100 feet above the Silurian Valley, the Avawatz Mountains form a commanding backdrop of colorful eroded slopes, rugged ridges and steep, narrow canyons. The Avawatz Mountains are composed of Precambrian, Paleozoic and Mesozoic era sedimentary and igneous rocks with some Tertiary-age sediments.
Archaeological sites indicate a historical presence of Native Americans. Members of the Shoshone Nation continue to use the area for spiritual and cultural purposes, collecting plants and other materials for crafts and medicines.
Nine natural springs supply water to desert animals such as bighorn sheep, coyotes, bobcats and roadrunners. Biologists have identified the Avawatz Mountains as a regional habitat connection allowing wildlife to move across the desert.