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Pinnacles May See Future As National Park

A push is being made by Rep. Sam Farr to make the Pinnacles National Monument, which came dangerously close to being damaged by last week's Gloria Fire, a national park.
/ Source: KSBW.com

KSBW.com

A push is being made by Rep. Sam Farr to make the Pinnacles National Monument, which came dangerously close to being damaged by last week's Gloria Fire, a national park.

Farr introduced the Pinnacles National Park Act in July, a bill that would establish the monument in San Benito County into a national park.

Designated a national monument just over 100 years ago, the Pinnacles doesn’t have the high profile or the huge crowds that some of the country's national parks do.

"Upgrading Pinnacles to a National Park makes sense for historic, natural and economic reasons," Farr said. "This area is much more than rock formations, It's a huge swatch of land with historical significance for the state, it provides an important refuge for the California condor and it has great potential for tourism revenue."

For years, the national monument has been an unknown for many people, even those living in California.

"You know Yosemite, Sequoia," said Scott Beggins, a first time visitor to the Pinnacles. "I've been in California all my life never heard of it until looked on map the other day. The marketability is probably pretty limited here."

Some local businesses said they support the idea of making the Pinnacles a national park if it means more traffic.

Images: Will Pinnacles Become National Park?

"I think it's a good thing," said Jesus Garcia, who manages a local pizzeria. "I mean, it'll bring more people more traffic and traffic is what creates business. The more traffic there is the better chance we have of better business in town."

National park status is the highest rating in the country's park system.

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