The Trail Companion
The date for construction of the Alpine Road bypass
trail reroute reported earlier has been delayed because of
staffing shortages in the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space
District. In addition, MROSD hasn't yet decided whether the
rerouted trail should be singletrack or a service road,
although the new trail will likely be only a singletrack
since Alpine Road would need additional work above the
bypass to allow vehicular traffic - which would only occur
if San Mateo County were also involved.
As reported in our Spring
issue, Alpine Road will be closed between Willowbrook and
the Portola town limits, 1/4 mi. below Joaquin Rd. for
July-November for a major road regarding and resurfacing
project on Alpine, as well as driveway construction for a
new house under construction in the inholding below the
Spring Ridge Trail. As a result, there will be no access to
Windy Hill from any of the Alpine Road trailheads,
including Razorback Ridge.
Due to a slide, horses are not allowed on the Skid Road
Trail between the White Oak Trail and the Canyon Trail.
Bikes are allowed, but must be walked past slide.
The MROSD Board of Directors approved purchase of 73
acres of oak-covered canyon and grassy hillsides to the
north of Pulgas Ridge OSP. The parcel is the last large
undeveloped tract of land in the area and could eventually
provide trail links to the San Francisco watershed lands to
the north and west. The property is especially valuable
because it largely free of the many invasive exotic plants
that plague Pulgas Ridge. MROSD had been discussing
purchase for years and was able to get the property for a
bargain price of $1.27 million. The property would have
been sold for development long ago had potential developers
been able to approval for annexation to San Carlos,
critical to hooking up sewer and water lines.
The MROSD Board also approved purchase of a 95-acre
parcel adjacent to Russian Ridge that will be incorporated
into the Preserve. The parcel includes steep, forested
slopes into the Mindego Creek canyon with some old-growth
Douglas fir and a view of Mindego Hill, an ancient volcano.
A house, barn, other outbuildings, and a small orchard are
located on the parcel; MROSD plans to rent out the
An updated Master Plan is in progress at Sierra Azul
OSP. The preserve is home to a wide variety of natural
resources, including lush riparian habitat, redwoods,
serpentine grasslands, and steep chaparral. A team of staff
and consultants is mapping and evaluating the preserve's
natural and cultural resources, encompassing flora and
fauna; geology, hydrology and soils; historic and
archeological sites; and the existing road and trail
system. The completed plan will help guide development of
trails and other potential recreational facilities within
the preserve, as well as the important regional trails -
most notably the Bay Area Ridge Trail, which connects the
preserve to Almaden Quicksilver County Park and Soquel
Demonstration Forest. MROSD will hold a series of public
planning meetings this fall, with some informational
meetings scheduled for the next few months. Contact MROSD
at (650) 691-1200 or visit the MROSD website for
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