Hugging the steep slope above the South Yuba River, Independence Trail winds through a mature forest of madrone (Arbutus menziesii), Pacific dogwood (Cornus nuttallii), and incense cedar (Calocedrus decurrens). For decades, busloads of school children, some in wheelchairs, have come here to learn about the natural world and look for newts in Rush Creek.
Avoid the plants. Learn how to identify poison oak in all seasons. Stay on cleared pathways. Keep pets from running through wooded areas so that the poison oak oils don’t accidentally stick to their fur, which you then might touch. Wear protective clothing.
To me, Nevada County is an inspiring place to live because it is full of ordinary people doing extraordinary things. I am proud of the grassroots efforts that are visible everywhere throughout the county. All of the outstanding non-profit organizations in our region exist because people support them. I want to thank those people for their contributions.
Thirteen years ago Bill Haire retired from the Forest Service and a long career of building wilderness trails in the Tahoe National Forest. We are lucky to live so close to this exceptional public land and at the foot of the awe-inspiring Sierra Nevada mountain range. Residents and visitors flock here by the thousands annually to explore the craggy granite peaks, deep and wild Yuba River canyons and pristine alpine meadows, on well-groomed, multi-use trails.
There are over 50 National Parks in the U.S. and California has some of the best – Pinnacles, Channel Islands, Death Valley, Joshua Tree, Kings Canyon, Lassen Volcanic, Redwood, Sequoia, and Yosemite National Park.
Any trail that you have walked in your life was no doubt, at least partially, sculpted by a Pulaski or a McLeod. We used these two tools extensively to build the Rambler Trail at Clover Valley Preserve. The names of these tools are esoteric, unless you fight fires or build trails. Once you are introduced to these two workhorses, you can’t forget about them.
Bear Yuba Land Trust builds multi-use, non-motorized trails in the watersheds of the Yuba and Bear River. We pride ourselves on being inclusive and believe that we can all get along and help each other achieve a common goal. That goal involves building more miles of trails to connect communities, preserving our town’s open space, boosting the economy, creating jobs, improving our health, and getting outside to interact with nature. The biggest conflict between trail user types sharing the same trail is a difference in speed.
When BYLT asked local hiking guru Hank Meals to share some ideas about safety and etiquette when out on the trail, he produced this thoughtful list that we are happy to share. Be sure to sign up for a hike at Black Swan with Hank during this year’s Celebration of Trails, Saturday, June 4.
The world needs people who can transform unwanted, useless byproducts into something amazing and useful. It is easy to tear down and destroy but it takes real skill and determination to build something awesome. Our quick fix prescription society produces an unbelievable amount of waste. We need to get smarter and more creative about reducing, reusing and recycling.
A series of winter storms in the Sierra Nevada foothills have left many local trails a mucky mess. To avoid trail widening, unnecessary erosion, soil damage, higher maintenance costs and labor demands, the trails crew at Bear Yuba Land Trust is asking the community to be responsible trail users when the ground is water logged and muddy.