Land Trust of Napa County is pleased to announce the closing of a conservation easement just outside Yountville donated by Elizabeth Moffitt.

“This easement will protect a beautiful and historic site in Napa, while also connecting and enhancing adjacent protected land,” said Land Trust CEO Doug Parker. “I want to thank Liz Moffitt, her son Alex and daughter Lucy for their commitment to protecting this beautiful site in Napa over the long-term.”

The 76-acre property protects scenic views, as well as forest, vineyards and watershed values. It includes part of the scenic backdrop west of Yountville that can easily be seen from Highway 29 and from the Town of Yountville. Combined with two other adjacent conservation easements, nearly 200 contiguous acres are now protected here. These properties create a corridor for wildlife and protect frontage along Hopper Creek, which flows from the Mayacamas through this property and on to Yountville. The easement eliminates the potential for a winery. By partnering with the Land Trust in creating the conservation easement, the Moffitt family preserves the property forever while maintaining the land in private ownership.

“My family and I are delighted that the Land Trust conservation easement will protect our property from commercial development in perpetuity,” said Moffitt.

“Liz has been a pleasure to work with,” said Randy Skidmore, Conservation Project Manager for the Land Trust. “Her primary motivation was to protect the land and I know her family felt the same way. Now they have accomplished that for generations to come.”

The Moffitt family has owned the property for over 50 years. It includes almost 70 acres of relatively undisturbed mixed hardwood-conifer forests, on the northern slopes of Hopper Creek canyon, with Black Oak, Madrone and Live Oak trees along with a two and a half acre Cabernet Sauvignon vineyard. The property was originally part of the 11,000-acre Rancho Caymus land grant awarded to George Yount in 1836. General John C. Fremont is said to have camped under one of the 200-300 year-old oak trees on the property. Yount gave the property to Charles Hopper who, in 1856, built the historic farm house, which still stands on the property and is used by the Moffitt family. Today, there is a one-hundred foot cedar tree near the house that was brought to Napa by the Moffitt family from Lake Tahoe in a coffee can 60 years ago.

A version of this story was published in the Napa Valley Register and can be found at