Win A Trip To California's Unspoiled Gem: Santa Cruz Island

Santa Cruz Island

Enter to win a journey to Southern California’s Channel Islands and explore the beauty of Santa Cruz with the scientists working to restore and conserve this natural treasure.

Stunning Santa Cruz Island, which clocks in as the largest and most biodiverse of California’s eight Channel Islands, is graced with a nearly 77-mile stretch of California coastline surrounding two mountain ranges flanking a central valley. Often referred to as the “Galapagos of North America,” the island is home to animals and plants found nowhere else on Earth, including the Island Fox and Island Scrub Jay.

The Nature Conservancy’s successful island restoration and innovative conservation practices have inspired countless scientists and conservationists around the world. And now, Santa Cruz Island has motivated novelists as well. Best-selling author T.C. Boyle—author of works such as “The Women,” “The Tortilla Curtain” and “A Friend of the Earth”—has written a new novel principally set on Santa Cruz Island called “When the Killing’s Done,” inspired by The Conservancy’s and the National Park Service’s work.

Since 1978, The Nature Conservancy has achieved extraordinary restoration success on Santa Cruz Island, including the re-establishment of bald eagles, removal of all feral sheep and pigs, vaccinating Island Scrub Jays against West Nile Virus and bringing the native Santa Cruz Island Fox back from the brink of extinction.

Boyle’s book tells the fictionalized tale of the island’s restoration and its incredible return from the brink of ecological collapse. What isn’t fictional is the conscious struggle scientists universally face as they attempt to exert control over the natural world for the greater good.

Inspired by the idea that public knowledge of this special place is also vital to its well-being, the Conservancy is announcing a contest to win a trip to this remarkable island. Come meet scientists who are saving Santa Cruz and learn firsthand about the work being done. You and a guest could win a trip to see this spectacular island firsthand, as well as the animals unique to the area, all while having the opportunity to stay overnight at a historic ranch.

And perhaps even spot an Island Fox.

Enter here to win an island adventure.

Contest Rules and Details

Trip takes place June 25-26, 2011; bad weather date July 30-31, 2011. Winners will be notified after May 25, 2011.

No purchase necessary. Open to US residents, 18 or older. You must enter by May 13, 2011. The prize includes (a) round-trip ferry transportation from Ventura, CA to Santa Cruz Island, CA (b) one night of accommodations at a historic ranch, (c) dinner and breakfast on the island, and (c) time with scientists on the Island.

The prize does not include transportation to and from Ventura, CA.

Latest posts by Jessica Matteson


  1. Jade on April 15, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    Cool! I would love to visit these islands- and so close to L.A.!!

  2. Antoinette on April 16, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    I’ve never heard of those islands; I would love to go and see them.

  3. Jennifer, learning spanish at home on August 4, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    I keep hearing that the santa cruz area is amazingly breatuiful, I really want to go there, next year I will visit LA and I will definitely try to check it out.

    I will share it with my friends on facebook, Thanks,

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