Governor Signs OHV Bill!!!!

Long link but I didn’t feel like editing it down.

Regardless, the Governor of CA has signed the bill regarding OHV grant funding. Our funding is now permanent!!!!

Details here…

Morris Rock (The Steps)

For those of you that haven’t seen them, a few new boulders appeared on Cadillac Hill after this past epic winter, just below Morris Rock.

Here’s a photo looking down Morris Rock. The three large boulders on the right are new.


It looks like someone has started to split the new boulders. Look at the three drill marks on the face of the rock with a horizontal face.


The new boulders make the approach a little narrow but I watched a JK with a trailer make it without issues last week.


Rubicon Ronin

Richardson Lake Trail re-route!

Yesterday, I received an email from a forest service employee boasting some great trail work on the Richardson Lake Trail up to Sourdough Hill. The only pictures he included were those of trails demolished and covered in trees and brush. I was horrified!

The series of pictures looked like this…


14N39 reroute

The next morning, I was up at 5:15am and out by 6:15am to get to the trail to see what the Forest Service had done to one of my trails.

Although the Forest Service had blocked off the last climb to the summit of Sourdough Hill, they had put in a switch back and more than a quarter mile of new trail.

For those of you who’ve never been there, here is a photo of the old route. This does not give you the idea of how steep this trail was originally. The ruts show previous wheel spinning and rain runoff causing erosion.


The old trail can be seen on the right side of the next picture, the new route goes from left to right in front of my Jeep. This reroute was warranted as the old route was a steep, loose, rocky, rutted trail that was causing erosion and was not safe as shown in the previous picture.


A better look up the trail after the switchback…



Here is another look up the blocked off ‘hill climb’…


Up from the switchback…


Back in to the trees. Note the trees cut down in order to create this new trail.


Nearing the summit. Those familiar with the trail should know the radio hut is to your left in this picture. You used to come up to the summit with the hut on your right.


The parking area is the same as before you just approach it from the bottom not the top.

Here is a shot of where the trail used to come up. (The radio hut to my left.)


Poser shot at the summit! A selfie if you count the shadow.


Views on the way down.


Hats off to the Forest Service for the reroute but I need to talk to my contact about communicating the entire story with more pictures.


Rubicon Ronin



Deer Valley Maintenance and opening!

August 3rd, the Deer valley Trail officially opened for the 2017 season. The Lake Tahoe Hi-Lo’s jumped at the opportunity to do some trail maintenance and open the trail.

The South County Trail Riders have adopted this trail but they were extremely busy getting the Cal4 Sierra Trek set up and running smooth. My thanks to them for that because Sierra Trek went very smooth. The Motherload Rock Crawlers were also out on the trail working with the Forest Service making final plans for the maintenance scheduled for the last three weekends in Sept.

So the Hi-Lo’s went to work. This was typical of what we found, trees either on the ground or ready to fall.

Tree snag up

We pulled out our saws and started cutting.


Once we got a system going, it went great. One team took off down the trail to deal with “THE” tree. More later. The second team would cut downed or hanging trees in to manageable lengths and would move on. The third team would clear the trail of the chopped up trees. We removed about 24 trees from the trail.

Tree snag down

When I refer to a tree across the trail as “THE” tree, it means it was a really big tree. This tree had been driven around by those breaking the law. We try and educate to fellow users to stay on the trail but there are those who don’t care.


Our crew used the bed of a truck to safely attack the tree.

40" log cut 1

40" log cut 2

With a lot of hard work, the first section of the tree was removed.

40" log 1st round

Some of the guys wanted souvenirs. See the photo of the month.

40" log, 42" bar

The last section was removed and the original route was reopened.

40" log 2nd round

The Hi-Lo’s returned to the trail on the 12th and removed even more trees in preparation of our Gambler’s Poker Run on the 19th of August.

Future Maintenance…

The mention of future maintenance refers to three weekends in Sept: 9/10, 16/17, 23/24. The plan is to move several hundred tons of rock to prevent erosion at the two creek crossings.

Please contact the Motherload Rock Crawlers if you plan on attending. Trailers are needed but not required.


Rubicon Ronin

Middle Fork Trail Maintenance


The Lake Tahoe Basin Maintenance Unit delayed the opening of their OHV trails due to the harsh winter we just experienced. They recently open the trails to public use. As documented in an earlier post, there were issues with the Middle Fork Trail.

On July 25th, five OHV volunteers, under the direction of the North Tahoe Trail Dusters, met at the Middle Fork trailhead at 9:30am in order to clear the trail of downed trees. There was a briefing on what was to take place, safety precautions, who would be responsible for what, communications, Etc. After clearing more than two dozen trees that blocked the trail and many more long the edges, we exited the gate at 3pm.

While we were meeting, a forest service representative showed up and added a combination lock to the lower Middle Folk gate so we could have access.

We worked our way up the trail clearing those trees obviously blocking the trail. The first group would cut them up in to smaller pieces and move on; the second group would throw the debris as far off the trail as easily accomplished. Some areas cleaned up better than others.


Some logs were left longer and were used to block illegally created bypasses. Some of those bypasses appeared to have been created early last fall after those wind storms.


On the way back down the trail, we took the time to clear/clean downed trees off the edges of the trail that didn’t really block the trail but encroached on the trail. There were some trees that were left hanging over the trail but at this time posed no threat to the users. At such time these trees do drop lower, we will remove them as needed.


Another thing we did was to drive 5-6 steel poles in to the ground around the washed out culvert and put up yellow ribbon between them. (That ground is rock hard and I doubt they will stay standing for too long because we couldn’t drive them too deep.) Although the trail is currently closed, we figured someone on a mountain bike or a motorcycle might poach the trail illegally and wanted to mark the hazard to prevent an accident.

We hope the forest service will fast track the rebuilding of the road over the culvert in order to open the trail as soon as possible.

Please be aware that other trails in the area will have similar conditions. Drive/ride under control at all times. “Turn Around, Don’t Go Around”. If you can’t clear a trail of something blocking it, turn around and go home. If you can remove the debris safely, feel free to do so in order to reopen the trail.

Happy Trails!


Rubicon Ronin