Okay, I really don’t know if anyone at the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit reads my blog, but they did reopen the Rubicon just two days after my latest post.
Forest Service lifts Lake Tahoe backcountry closure early
Release Date: Oct 15, 2021
Contact(s): Public Affairs, Lisa Herron 530-721-3898
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif., Oct. 15, 2021 – The USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit (LTBMU) Backcountry Closure Order (19-21-07), which temporarily closed Desolation Wilderness, Meiss Country and focused access corridors along the West Shore during the Caldor Fire, is lifted effective today, Oct. 15, 2021.
The Caldor Fire Emergency Closure Order (19-21-06) remains in effect through Dec. 31, 2021, for National Forest lands within and surrounding the fire perimeter. The closure order and map can be viewed on the LTBMU home page at www.fs.usda.gov/ltbmu. The public is advised that significant hazards remain within the Caldor Fire area including ongoing restoration activities, use of fire vehicles and heavy equipment, crew and aircraft activity, fire weakened trees and smoldering pockets of fuel. Please use the closure order description and map to stay out of the fire closure area. View the closure order and map at https://go.usa.gov/xM9Jy.
The following Desolation Wilderness trailheads that access south side areas within the Caldor Fire closure are still closed to public use for both overnight and day use access. Those trailheads are Rockbound, Twin Lakes, Lyons, Pyramid Creek/Horsetail Falls, Ralston, and Echo Lakes.
As a reminder, enhanced fire restrictions remain in effect for all National Forest lands in the Lake Tahoe Basin through Nov. 30, 2021. The Fire Restriction Forest Order can be viewed on the Forest Order webpage at go.usa.gov/xMXYK. Propane appliances with an on/off switch are permitted with a valid CA Campfire Permit.
In addition, closures on the Eldorado National Forest have been reduced, but many areas remain closed due to the Caldor Fire. For more information about the Eldorado National Forest, visit their website at www.fs.usda.gov/eldorado
My apologies for not realizing this sooner. It took the latest Caldor Fire Update, not including the LTBMU Back County closure, for me to get the information.
Here’ the twist. With the announcement that the LTBMU was extending the closure, the McKinney Rubicon Road was prominently mentioned in the brief heading for the closure. In the reopening press release, the McKinney Rubicon Trail is not mentioned in the preview paragraph or the main body of the order. I truly believe that the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit is anti-OHV and specifically anti-Rubicon.
The Eldorado National Forest sends of emails with OHV important information. I received an email when the Caldor closed the Eldorado and our other national forests. The LTBMU does not send out such emails. This should change. Our National Forest partners (?) should make an effort to keep the users and the general public informed. How hard would it be to notify RTF, Cl4, Blue Ribbon, local clubs? They already are part of an email group that discusses nothing but Rubicon issues. And yet they didn’t get the information out.
The Lake Tahoe Basin Management (LTBMU) Unit still has the Rubicon Trail closed until October 20th.
- The Caldor Fire is 98% contained.
- There has been rain and snow over the entire area.
- Temperatures are ranging from the 20’s to the 60’s.
- The Rubicon Trail is open in Eldorado National Forest
- The Rubicon Trail is open in the Tahoe National Forest
- There are no strong winds forecast
Why is the Rubicon still closed?
Where is the Rubicon Trail Foundation (RTF)?
- RTF’s mission statement: “To Enhance the Future Health and Use of the Rubicon Trail, while Ensuring Responsible Motorized Year-Round Access.”
Why is RTF not ensuring our “year-round access”?
Does anyone fight for the Rubicon anymore? Is this the future of the Rubicon, seasonal closures due to possible fire conditions? If someone doesn’t push back, we will lose our trail during future summers as we’ve lost it this past summer.
FYI, if you go up to check out the trail status first hand, the bathrooms at the staging area are closed.