West Coyote Hills

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West Coyote Hills
West Coyote Hills is located in California
West Coyote Hills
West Coyote Hills
location of West Coyote Hills in California [1]
Highest point
Elevation 184 m (604 ft)
Country United States
State California
District Orange County
Range coordinates 33°54′19.050″N 117°57′44.224″W / 33.90529167°N 117.96228444°W / 33.90529167; -117.96228444Coordinates: 33°54′19.050″N 117°57′44.224″W / 33.90529167°N 117.96228444°W / 33.90529167; -117.96228444
Topo map USGS La Habra

The West Coyote Hills are a low mountain range in northern Orange County, California.[1] Parts of it lie within the city limits of La Habra, Buena Park, and La Mirada, with most of it sprawling across western Fullerton between Ralph B. Clark Regional Park and Euclid Street north of Rosecrans Avenue. The foothill region to the east and south is known as Sunny Hills.[2]


The hills received their name from the nearby Rancho Los Coyotes; by the 1870s they were being called Coyote Hills.[3]


The West Coyote Hills was once a major oil field, dating back to 1890.[4] Extraction has long since ceased, and most of the West Coyote Hills has been developed for residential and commercial use, as well as West Coyote Hills Park.

A tract measuring 510 acres (2.1 km2) across the ridge of the hills, owned by Pacific Coast Homes (a land development division of the Chevron Corporation), is the largest remaining tract of undeveloped land in north Orange County. Plans to build 760 homes on 179 acres (0.72 km2), while restoring and donating 352 acres to the City of Fullerton for use as the Robert E. Ward Nature Preserve.[5] A group called Open Coyote Hills has been leading the support[6] while a group called Friends of Coyote Hills has led the push to preserve the entire site as open space.[7]


U.S. Geological Survey researchers have found invertebrate fossils representing 184 taxa from 158 localities in the “San Pedro” Formation in the Coyote Hills, including various species of annelids, mollusks, arthropods, and echinoids; the fossils suggest a late Pliocene to early Pleistocene age for outcrops of the formation. The occurrence of the bivalve Solamen columbianum in the area marks its first occurrence as a fossil. The oldest fossil occurrence of the gastropods Tegula pulligo (Gmelin), questionably Haliotis cracherodii, and the crustacean Randallia ornata occur in the “San Pedro” Formation in the Coyote Hills.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "West Coyote Hills". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2009-05-04. 
  2. ^ Dodero, Tony (August 29, 2004). "In Fullerton hills, life slows to a trot". Los Angeles Times. 
  3. ^ Brigandi, Phil (2006). Orange County place names, A to Z. San Diego: Sunbelt Publications. 
  4. ^ Hicks, Jerry (May 6, 2001). "Fullerton Group Will Oppose Development of Coyote Hills". pp. B4. 
  5. ^ http://westcoyotehills.com/pages/plan/nature_park/preserved.html
  6. ^ http://www.opencoyotehills.com/
  7. ^ Carpenter, Eric (April 10, 2006). "West Coyote Hills housing plan stirs debate". The Orange County Register. 
  8. ^ Powell, Charles L. II & Stevens, Dave (2000). "Age and Paleoenvironmental Significance of Mega-Invertebrates from the "San Pedro" Formation in the Coyote Hills, Fullerton and Buena Park, Orange County, Southern California" (PDF). United States Geological Survey. Open-File Report 00-319. 

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