The Lake Tahoe area got a dumping of snow over the last few days. After a short day of skiing Alpine Meadows, I drove to the Rubicon Trailhead. The ever-present snow wall was actually being built. More later. Note photo below compared to the third photo below.
There was a route through the wall from those that had snowshoed or cross county skied up the trail. I wanted to open the entrance a little bit more for wheeled vehicles.
Before I had the chance to unload my blower, the plow guy came by to add to my workload. Fortunately, I was right at my rig and I was able to move it without interfering with the plow operator. He did come by a few more times on the other side of the street and just shook his head. My camera operator was hiking up the trail when they heard it come by.
So, after repositioning my truck, my unnamed accomplice and I pulled out my snowblower and we went to work. It was a chunky ice nightmare. We used the shovel to break down the wall and then the blower to throw it to the side. Please note that all snow moved from the roadway was thrown to an area known to also be over asphalt.
It took about 45-minutes and it was time to leave. The neighbor across the street had already come out of her house to take pictures from her driveway. I figured the sheriff was on the way. We left it a little narrow, but everyone will get the point that this is the entrance to the Rubicon Trail.
On the drive back home, shortly north of the turn off 89, a sheriff’s rig was headed south bound!
The Rubicon Trail is open year-round! The trailhead is now open to anyone and everyone that would like to enjoy it.
So, checked a few days later and not much new but decided to clean it up a bit
Didn’t take any time at all.
It’s a good eight feet wide through the berm. I drove my truck in about ten feet. I was alone and didn’t want to get stuck twenty feet from the road.
Big storm coming this weekend. Be prepared if you go out!
As with all of you, I’m trying to get a handle on this Mosquito Fire Rubicon closure situation. So, I try and find all the current information that I can, so I can pass it along to you.
The Tahoe National Forest and the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit still have a forest order in place closing the Rubicon Trail. I just checked (9/25/22, 7:45am), it’s still on the LTBMU website.
El Dorado County’s ‘Parks’ page and the subsequent ‘Rubicon’ page still have the Rubicon Trail as closed, but then lists the guidelines for traveling. “The Rubicon Trail is closed and the guidelines traveling are:” A little confusing.
Poking around the website a little more, the El Dorado County’s Sheriff has NOT posted the Rubicon Trail as closed. It lists Ice House Road and Wentworth Springs Road as closed but NOT the Rubicon Trail. A little more confusing.
From the same website, the El Dorado County closure map shows nothing closed or under current evacuation orders. Now, this map does not show roads but shouldn’t it reflect the current FS closures?
Per the Eldorado National Forest, the current closure has the area ahead of the active fire closed.
Our government agencies need to get their act together and become more transparent and to provide accurate information to the general public. The purpose of getting this information out is to educate the general public about where they can safely and legally travel and where they can’t. If the information out there is vague or contradictory, the public is confused.
I’m hoping that tomorrow, through the re-evaluation that has been promised, the Rubicon Trail will once again be open to the public. I’m betting they wait until the end of the day to make an announcement, if they announce anything. It’s more likely that if they reopen the Rubicon, they’ll just remove all orders but not tell anyone the trail has reopened.
Here is the link to the NEW forest order:
The Eldorado National Forest has redrawn the closure area for the Mosquito Fire. The Rubicon Trail area is now OPEN within the Eldorado National Forest but the El Dorado County website still has the Rubicon Trail closed. I will be emailing Vickie as soon as I stop typing this line.
Vickie emailed, TNF called (left message), LTBMU called (left message). 9/23/2022 1:30pm
Let’s see how long it takes to get the Rubicon Trail reopened.
Friday 5pm: The word on the street is that the ‘Incident Command Team’ running the Mosquito Fire is not allowing the County to reopen the Rubicon Trail at this time. There will be a reevaluation done on Monday that should get the trail reopened. Please respect the unnecessary closure for a little while longer.
As you all are well aware, a rather large storm has recently passed through the Sierra. The storm brough much needed rain and even snow in the higher elevations. This will help firefighters get better control of the Mosquito Fire. This morning, the containment was reported at 49%! Hopefully, that will mean reduced closures.
Also, CORVA has stepped up and into the arena and has been working to get our lands reopened that were unnecessarily closed. They have been in contact with the Forest Service, trying to explain the other side of the argument.
Several points were made to those in authority:
-the fire is 10 miles away from the Loon spillway and almost 20 miles from Rubicon Springs
-no other areas were closed along-side the Rubicon
(There were literally guards on the access road to the Tahoma staging area!)
-no other activities were shut down besides OHV
-most OHV users along the Rubicon can be contacted by radio to alert them
-OHV has the ability to extract much more quickly than other activities
-the fire is headed to old burn scars and will die down when it reaches them
One of the main points made is that OHV needs to be treated the exact same way as other forms of recreation.
It is our hope that the Forest Service will recognize the errors of their way and back down on the closure orders. Unfortunately, I don’t see the FS working very fast on this. I will post up as soon as I hear anything.
If you don’t know CORVA, it is the California Off-Road Vehicle Association. www.CORVA.org Join today. Join right now. CORVA gets out there and fights the fight. They fight for access to our public lands.
My previous post outlined a few closures due to the Mosquito Fire. The Eldorado National Forest and the Tahoe National Forest have enacted Forest Orders to close a portion of their forests for safety. The Eldorado oddly carved out the Rubicon Trail for closure even though it was far away from the active fire. The Tahoe National Forest closed a portion of their forest but not the Rubicon Trail.
Today, I learned that the Rubicon Trail has been specifically separated out for closure by both the Tahoe National Forest and the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit.
Now the trails up Blackwood Canyon have not been closed. Forest Road 03-04 to the Rubicon, Hobbit and other trails have not been closed. But the Rubicon Trail has been closed. This is not a closure done for safety.
This is not the first time the Rubicon Trail was closed due to a fire a dozen or more miles away.
I’ve reached out to the Rubicon Trail Foundation (RTF) regarding the closure but they only say they are aware and working on it.
This is not an attack by the USFS on OHV. This is an attack on the Rubicon Trail by our local forest leaders. RTF seems unable to prevent or quickly reverse such unnecessary closes. Maybe it’s time we found a new group to fight to keep the Rubicon Trail open.