The Flora of North America describes the distribution of brown screw-moss as spanning western North America (including Mexico), western and southern South America, Europe, western Asia, Africa, some of the Pacific Islands (Hawaii, New Zealand), Australia, and Antarctica. It is therefore one of the relatively few multicellular species that can be found on all major continents.
Syntrichia princeps is one of 80 or so species within the genus. One can infer (perhaps wrongly so!) that is among the most common of the species within the group, as its distribution range largely overlaps the distribution of the genus, lacking only in being absent from Central America and some of the Atlantic Islands.
The plants in today’s photograph are undergoing drought conditions, so the leaves are folded and twisted. Do visit CalPhotos to see what plants look like when moisture is available: Syntrichia princeps (and some additional photographs). Richard has also posted photographs of the plants in habitat, if you follow the link to the original Flickr image from the photo credits.