Regarding maintenance of the Rubicon Trail, Placer County has taken the position that they are not responsible. They are out.
The first question that comes to mind is, then who is responsible?
Well, it falls to the property owner, who is the US Forest Service.
Thankfully, El Dorado County has stepped up and is working on paperwork that would give them the authority to perform maintenance on the Rubicon through the Tahoe National Forest and the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit.
This would give one ‘government agency’ control over the entire trail. This was the dream of Del Albright when he first formed FOTR and started the drive to save the Rubicon Trail.
El Dorado County, specifically, Vickie Sanders, has been knocking it out of the park regarding maintenance since before the Clean-Up and Abatement order. Although some my not like what has been done, if it wasn’t done, the trail would have been closed years ago due to water quality issues.
Vickie has brought in millions of dollars in grant funds to harden the Rubicon Trail, prevent erosion and thus keep the trail open. Unfortunately, the way the grant cycle works, she won’t have funding for Tahoe side work until the end of the summer.
RTF has decided to step up and hire a contractor to start in on the rebuilding of the rolling dips within the LTBMU. El Dorado will do the paperwork and engineering, LTBMU will approve all work done and RTF will pay for it.
It is not know what level of volunteer work will be needed during this initial phase. Most of the work will be done with heavy equipment.
Getting back to Placer County, they still recognize the public ‘right to pass’, which I think (hope) will keep the Rubicon Trail open year round. If the FS had taken over control of every aspect of the trail, there would be a seasonal closure probably from Nov 16th through May 31st.
Okay, so it is officially spring but you wouldn’t know it by looking around Tahoe.
I snapped a few pictures of the Jeep trailer I left at my cabin at Tahoe.
Yeah, that’s it under the mound of snow in the back.
I’m pretty sure it will be okay as there was never that much snow on it. Only about five feet.
Spring is coming. Time to dig out our rigs (and trailers) and get them ready for the trail. Remember the trails will be very wet for a long time. Tread Lightly!
My apologies. I learned of this five days ago and sent emails to a few clubs but I failed to post it here.
The Lake Tahoe Hi-Lo’s will be attending in full force. There is a special meeting scheduled for 5pm to specifically discuss Rubicon Trail issues.
If you can’t make the meeting, please email your thoughts and concerns regarding current OHV issues in the Lake Tahoe Basin. The Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit’ grant application should be available on the Ca State Parks website.
Forest Service hosts open house for OHV grant application
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – The USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit will host an open house to provide information and seek public input on the annual California Department of Parks and Recreation, Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation (OHMVR) Division grant application. The OHMVR application requests funding for trail maintenance, and
operation of facilities for off-highway vehicle (OHV) access in the Lake Tahoe Basin. The open house will take place on Thursday, March 28, 2019, at the Forest Service office in South Lake Tahoe, 35 College Drive, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150. There will be no formal presentation, instead the public may arrive between 4 – 7 p.m. and visit informational stations, talk with staff and ask questions. The 60-day grant application comment period began Tuesday, March 5 and ends Monday, May 6.
For requests for reasonable accommodation access to the facility or proceedings, contact Adrian Escobedo at 530-543-2758 or email email@example.com.
For more information on the application, grant process or how to comment, contact Jacob Quinn at 530-543-2609 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Again, my apologies for not getting this posted in a timely manner. In the future I will make a better effort to get out anything that could effect our Tahoe area OHV trails.
Probably to no one’s surprise, the Eldorado National Forest has delayed the opening of it’s OHV trails from April 1st to April 16th. This doesn’t effect our side too much except for the Richardson Lake Trail 14N39.
Although some of the more built rigs will be able to get to the 14N39 trailhead before April 16th, most of us will have no chance to get to the trailhead let alone run that trail to higher elevations.
Please stay off this trail until the trail officially opens. Below is the Forest Service press release regarding the subject…
Seasonal road and motorized trail closure extended to April 15
PLACERVILLE, Calif. – Based on recent precipitation, the seasonal closure of native surface roads and motorized trails (commonly known as dirt roads) in the Eldorado National Forest has been extended to April 15. Rainfall, soil moisture, road and trail conditions, and weather forecasts are factors that trigger extending the seasonal closure beyond March 31.
“My goal is to have these roads and trails open as soon as possible for public use,” said Forest Supervisor Laurence Crabtree. “However, there has been a lot of precipitation in the last several weeks. Given current conditions, many of these roads could be badly damaged.”
The seasonal closure is designed to protect roadbeds and watersheds from damage and to protect water quality. A minimum three month closure period from January 1 through March 31 was designated for the core part of the wet season in the Eldorado National Forest Travel Management Plan. This plan also allows the seasonal dirt road closure to start earlier or be extended based on actual conditions in a given year.
Roads and trails subject to seasonal closure are marked with a “Seasonal Designation” on the current motor vehicle use map that is available free-of-charge at all Eldorado National Forest offices and on the web at: www.fs.usda.gov/eldorado. The seasonal closure does not affect routes in the Rock Creek Area near Georgetown, which has its own wet weather route closure process.
When the roads open, there will still be wet areas at higher elevations for some time. Many routes change in elevation over several miles. Visitors are encouraged to be aware of changes in the conditions of the roads they are using, and to adjust travel plans when they reach a wet section as they will be responsible for any resource damage caused by inappropriate use.
Now that Spring is here, we’re all thinking about getting out on our trails. Well I stopped by the Rubicon this morning and the trail is calling.
The berm is actually quite manageable. The top of my shell is about six feet tall. So, the berm is about seven feet tall. I was there in the morning and it was frozen solid as the temperature was about 34 degrees.
Over the top of the berm, you drop down a little bit. I tried to dig my heel in to the snow to see how hard or soft the snow was and I couldn’t.
I walked up the trail a bit and the snow was just as hard and calling for wheelers.
If you go, please go prepared. Be ready to spend the night as things could go wrong. Food, shelter, clothing, recovery gear, etc.
Enjoy and be safe!