15N38 (Middle Fork) gate still closed!!!!

The plan was to meet the Tahoe Donner 4wdc at the Rubicon staging area, run up the Rubicon to Forest Road 03-04 and head over to Blackwood canyon and come out the Middle Fork Trail, 15N38.

I had this feeling I needed to check the gate at the bottom of Blackwood Canyon at both Forest Road 03 and the Middle Fork Trail. The 03 road isn’t scheduled to open until June 15th, and they never OPEN roads early. The gate for 03 and the Middle Fork Trail are supposed to open June 1st. Well the main road was open but the Middle Fork Trail is still closed.

At the staging area, we ran in to another group who were planning the same route, Rubicon to 03-04- and out 15N38. I passed along the bad news. They took their six Unimogs and headed up the Richardson Lake Trail and made the summit. Some snow but enough dirt to maintain traction.

The Motor Vehicle Use Map (MVUM) posted at the Rubicon staging area has June 1st as the opening date for 15N38. The MVUM on the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit’s (LTBMU) website has June 1st as the opening date as well. Yet the gate isn’t open. I don’t know if the gate is open at the top.

The LTBMU needs to get on top of this and fast. How many other groups are going to head north from the Rubicon expecting to get out Blackwood Canyon and find closed gates?

Maybe some new guy at the LTBMU thinks it should open with the gate on 03 just past the river on June 15th. I’ll be contacting the LTBMU in the morning about this issue. Please feel free to join me in letting them know how you feel about them not opening our OHV trail in a timely fashion.(530) 543-2600













was headed to run around the Rubicon area on the 11th and

Meeting with the LTBMU Supervisor

This afternoon, I sat down with Jeff Marsolais, the forest supervisor of the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, for a half an hour. When I say half an hour, I mean 30 minutes, almost to the second. I got 30 minutes in the seat in his office. I had three typed pages of notes to get through so I talked fast. But that’s easy for me.

Although he didn’t have time to respond to all the issues I brought up, he said he’d get back to me. So, what did I bring up? Here’s a brief outline of topics:

Who is the OHV lead for the LTBMU?

Should be full time and year round but not 100% OHV focused.

Needs to be pro-OHV not just someone doing the job.

We need consistency and quicker responses from the LTBMU.

AAT agreements and paperwork

The Forest Service needs to be quicker and proactive on approaching and supporting clubs willing to adopt

Rubicon Trail

Limbs cut off years ago need to be removed or chipped

The main sign at the staging area

Staging area maintenance

Recreational Opportunity Guide – finish it or drop it

General signage along the trail, paved and dirt sections

Other trails

Buck Lake Trail

Twin Peaks

Middle Fork Trail


CA State Parks – start writing next years now, include more people in the process

Recreational Trails Program (RTP)

Foundation Grants

How did the Corral Trail get a full time, eight person crew to work that trail since the OHV grant fell through?

He did say he might be interested in a ride out on the trail to see first hand what’s going on. That would be a great education for him!

This one meeting won’t end these issues but now we all know the main guy at the Basin has been told how all those underneath him have dropped the ball over the years.