In 2021, DPMR adopted three local trails through the Truckee Trails Foundation – the Emigrant Trail, the Mt. Judah Loop Trail, and the Warren Lake Trail (Castle Peak 100k sponsors this one) – with the responsibility to scout trail conditions in the spring, report any issues, and work with TTF to clean the trails up and resolve any issues. In fact, you’ll now seer our trail sponsorship signs at the trailheads!
So once spring arrived this year, the Emigrant Trail was the first to melt and become accessible. We held two scouting group runs in May where we took photos of several issues along the Emigrant Trail segment that stretches between Stampede and Donner Family Picnic Area. We reported back to TTF and started to formulate the plans for a trail work day to tackle some of the problem areas.
The first section we focused on was a long straightaway about a mile south of the Hobart Mills Rd crossing where erosion netting that had been built into the trails likely 10+ years ago was completely exposed, creating a major tripping hazard for runners and hikers. Many of us thought that the netting had been like that as long as we could remember, and couldn’t wait to get rid of it.
The plan was to pull up the netting and resurface the trail. However, the netting was likely put in place originally due to the poor design of this stretch of trail running downhill and creating both a bike hazard as well as drainage issues. So Fil from TTF laid out a plan to reroute this section of trail to create a slight upward grade with a wider turn on the far end.
The DPMR volunteers – Dan, Owen, Jack, and Helen – showed up on a hot, dusty August day and went to work. We dug out all of the old erosion netting and covered that trail to deter future use and decommission it. Our crew also removed bushes, roots, and rocks to clear a path for the new route. Larger rocks were gathered to created a wider, safer banked turn for bikes at the far end.
The project was a big success, and we are looking forward to fixing up other sections of the Emigrant Trail before the season ends — trimming overgrowth, more netting fixes, and some poor drainage sections that suffer every year when the snow melts. Stay tuned for dates and times for the next work days!
We are happy to report that after a June scouting run, the My. Judah Loop Trail needed very little work this year, and we found it in perfect condition in late June by the time all the snow had melted from the higher elevation. Our sole duty was to put the trail intersection sign back in place on the PCT!
Thank you to all the volunteers who came out to help and offer up much sweat and energy to keep our amazing trails in great shape! We hope you see you at our next trail event.