Watch Out for Washouts

Major storms in July devastated Eastern Sierra roads and trails.

A 40-foot-high mudslide across 168 West stranded hikers in the Sabrina Basin, and severe washouts made the Pine Creek Pass and Piute Pass Trails nearly impassable. Another mudslide closed the Lundy Canyon Road and destroyed a portion of the trail reroute our Stewardship Crew spent three weeks building in June.
Crews work to move debris off the Pine Creek Trail. Photo by Chris Engelhardt.

Luckily, Friends of the Inyo’s Trail Ambassadors are poised to address exactly this type of emergency.

With extensive experience, flexible schedules, and great attitudes, they can act as first responders for trail crises throughout the region. On short notice, we worked with Inyo National Forest Wilderness Manager Chris Engelhardt and his team of rangers to repair the damaged Pine Creek Trail. After four days of intensive labor clearing massive rocks and filling in huge gullies, the trail looks as good as new. According to Chris, “Without exaggeration, we probably moved three tons of material off the trail.”
This week, we’re helping to fix the washouts on the Piute Pass Trail, just in time for our Sierra National Forest Wilderness Project in Humphreys Basin August 8-12.
You never know what lies in store for our trails. From flooding and downed trees last spring to giant boulders and debris slides this summer, we’ve learned that there’s always plenty of work to do. Our talented seasonal crews and strong partnerships with local land management agencies allow us to jump into the fray and get it done.
Trail Ambassadors and Inyo National Forest Wilderness Rangers hard at work repairing the Pine Creek Trail. Photo by David Wieland.

Comments (1)

I lead a Sierra club trail maintance service trip in mid-80’s, we built a causeway a few miles above that spot, What a view!!!

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