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Lots planned for local trails

Delaine Fragnoli
Managing Editor
7/7/2011

As a fan of both trails and fire lookouts, I was excited to hear that the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship is exploring the possibility of working with the Sierraville Ranger District of the Tahoe National Forest to restore the Badenaught Trail, which leads from Loyalton to the Babbitt Peak Fire Lookout.

Burned over in 1994, the trail has been in a state of disrepair and disuse ever since. Photos posted to the SBTS website, (sierratrails.org) show much of the alignment intact, but overgrown and choked with brush and downed trees. The pics also hint at the scenic potential of the route.

To top things off, the trail ends at Babbitt Peak Lookout, which I understand is still manned for fire detection.

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The Yahi Group of the Sierra Club, out of Chico, heads to Lassen Volcanic National park Saturday, July 30, to climb Mount Conard.

The 7.5-mile round trip gains 1,500 feet on the way to the 8,204-foot summit. En route, you can enjoy Mill Creek Falls and beautiful meadows. The last mile is a cross-country climb along a ridge. From the top, you have great views of Lassen Peak, Brokeoff and the surrounding area.

Bring lunch, water and boots with good tread. The group meets at Chico Park and Ride at 8 a.m. Contact leader Alan at 891-8789 or ajmendoza@prodigy.net for alternate arrangements.

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The Sierra Institute has slated a new tour of interest to outdoor enthusiasts: “The Best of Lake Almanor: Biking, Birding, Barbecuing and Boating,” is set for Friday, July 22.

Participants will either walk or bike (you need to bring your own bike) the paved Lake Almanor Recreational Trail, looking for birds.

Afterwards, you’ll join watershed coordinator Emily Creely for a boat ride on the lake. She will describe the lake ecology, explain its importance and discuss local efforts to preserve it.

The tour concludes with a lakeside barbecue.

The tour starts at 7 a.m. at Lake Almanor boat ramp and picnic grounds. Tour will end around 1 p.m.

To register, contact Lauri Rawlins-Betta at 284-1022 or lrawlins@sierrainstitute.us. For more information, visit sierrainstitute.us.

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The Mt. Lassen Chapter of the California Native Plant Society offers a series of free public outings, including two this month in our area. Although the group hails from Chico, alternate meeting sites can be arranged to accommodate those living in Plumas.

The group heads to Hellgrammite Lakes in the Lakes Basin Recreation Area, outside of Graeagle, to look at fens Saturday, July 16, accompanied by a Forest Service guide.

The group describes the Lakes Basin as “the gem of the Plumas National Forest with 50 or more crystal alpine lakes confined within five small glacial basins.” The group will visit one of the larger glaciated lake basins, hiking a gradual two miles to Hellgrammite Lake, elevation 6,900 feet, where you can learn about nearby fens. A fen is like a bog, but it supports more diverse plant life. Fens often feature floating edges or islands of matted vegetation. Expect to see a variety of flowering plants and shrubs in a forest setting.

Bring lunch, water, sturdy shoes and sun/insect protection. Call leaders Gerry (893-5123) and Wes (342-2293) for alternate meeting site.

The group will visit Wilson Lake in the Lassen National Forest on Sunday, July 24. From the southern slopes of Lassen Peak in Plumas County, the group will take gravel county roads, enjoying short easy walks to view floral displays and interesting areas in and around Wilson Lake. You’ll also have great views of the North Fork Feather River headwaters.

Bring lunch, water, sturdy shoes and sun/insect protection. Call leaders Emilie (894-8057) and Gerry (893-5123) to arrange a meeting point.

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Lassen Land and Trails Trust is offering one of its Bizz Johnson Trail shuttles Saturday, July 16. The series of bike shuttles continues the first and third Saturdays of each month through October. Shuttles are planned for Aug. 6 and 20, Sept. 3 and 17, and Oct. 1, 15 and 29 (the annual fall colors ride).

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) provides a truck and trailer to shuttle bikes from Susanville to starting points along the trail. Lassen Rural Bus transports hikers and bike riders as part of its regularly scheduled service between Susanville and Westwood. The shuttles allow people to arrange one-way — and mostly downhill — trips on the trail without having to plan their own vehicle shuttles.

The BLM shuttle and accompanying Lassen Rural Bus will depart from the Susanville Railroad Depot on Richmond Road at 8:30 a.m., making stops at Devil’s Corral (7-mile return ride), Fredonyer Summit (12 miles) and Mason Station (18 miles) en route to the final stop at the Westwood trailhead (30 miles). Separate bike shuttle fees and bus fares vary according to stop.

Participants should be at the Susanville Depot a half-hour before departure to allow time for bicycle loading.

To reserve space, visit the Lassen Land and Trails Trust website, llttweb.org, and click on the event registration link. More information is available by calling 257-3252.


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