SACRAMENTO, CA (April 27) - The Rubicon Trail is open and OHV recreation is sustained on this icon of four-wheeling, according to the Rubicon Trail Foundation (RTF) and Friends of the Rubicon (FOTR). The Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board (CVRWQCB) voted unanimously to issue a Cleanup and Abatement Order (CAO) to El Dorado County and the Eldorado National Forest for the world-famous Rubicon Trail that sustains motorized recreation while enhancing stewardship of the trail.
Not only did the Board enact an order that recreationists can live with, but they also went so far as to praise the efforts of the volunteers for addressing trail issues in such a prompt manner all these years.
The Rubicon Trail traverses the mighty Sierra Nevada Mountains of California from roughly Georgetown, CA to Lake Tahoe, CA. Water runoff and erosion are always concerns on trails in the west, but thanks to the efforts of all the clubs and members of Friends of the Rubicon in partnership with Eldorado County, landowners and the USFS, the Rubicon Trail is well maintained.
"FOTR has invested thousands of hours of organized trail work and maintenance since our beginning in 2001," said Del Albright, co-Founder and Trail Boss, Friends of the Rubicon. "We are well-prepared to address any concerns or issues on this famous trail, and we are working towards a future of stewardship we can all be proud of," Albright added.
Greg Mumm, Executive Director of the BlueRibbon Coalition, pointed out that "BlueRibbon has sponsored Del's leadership of efforts on the Rubicon Trail since the beginning, and we are confident that FOTR can handle this like they have everything else thrown at this famous trail."
The Rubicon Trail Foundation is the 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to supporting efforts on the Rubicon Trail. They led the effort to ensure the Water Board understood all trail issues. RTF has position statements covering many aspects of trail use on the Rubicon, including topics like water quality, sanitation, camping, and year-round use.
The Rubicon Trail Foundation does not support the blanket restriction of Rubicon Trail use by season, or by vehicle numbers, type or size. Further, the Rubicon Trail Foundation encourages the establishment of reasonable and practical operating procedures for training of volunteer groups and others to install and maintain trail drainage structures, stream crossings and new trail segments.
Other issues being addressed by the dedicated volunteers of FOTR and RTF include mitigating oil spills and managing human waste. The Rubicon Trail Foundation supports requiring every Rubicon Trail user to carry portable human waste disposal devices and requiring every motorized user to carry oil spill kits.
The Rubicon Trail Foundation works hand in hand with the Friends of the Rubicon and together, with the agency partners, these groups are ensuring an access-friendly future for the Rubicon Trail.
"We look forward to implementing this order from the Water Quality Board in conjunction with our great partners in the county and USFS, because we all will benefit, and our trail will stay open, alive and well," Albright concludes.
# # #
The BlueRibbon Coalition is a national recreation group that champions responsible recreation, and encourages individual environmental stewardship. It represents over 10,000 individual members and 1,200 organization and business members, for a combined total of over 600,000 recreationists nationwide. 1-800-258-3742. http://www.sharetrails.org