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Corral Canyon - National Trails Day Celebration At Corral Canyon

Posted in Features on October 1, 2005
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On Saturday, June 4, National Trails Day with an Open House celebration at the Corral Canyon OHV area took place. This event was cosponsored by SDORC, the San Diego 4 Wheelers, the Caring Trail Users (a Division of the California Trail Users Coalition), and the Descanso Ranger District of the Cleveland Nation Forest. It was a beautiful day at Corral Canyon, with approximately 70 people on hand for the festivities.

The highlight of the day was the dedication and run on the new Bronco Peak Trail reroute. The Bronco Peak Trail is a very technical four-wheel-drive trail. It is the sponsored adopt-a-trail of the San Diego 4 Wheelers Club at Corral Canyon. The western part of the trail was in danger of being closed due to environmental concerns. The trail had originally been improperly routed through a natural drainage area, which we now recognize is not the place to have an OHV trail. Since this was a very popular trail for the four-wheel-drive folks and was the San Diego 4 Wheelers' adopted trail, they became very concerned about its possible closure. They contacted the Forest Service to see about rerouting it away from the problem area.

The Forest Service stepped up, and with great cooperation from the San Diego 4 Wheelers (SD4W), they were able to construct a rerouted section away from the sensitive drainage area. An initial concern in this project was that a very challenging section of the trail was going to be closed; SD4W wanted something equally challenging to replace it. The Descanso Ranger District secured the help of the trail building experts, Trails Unlimited, to create the design and primary construction of the new trail section. Volunteers with SD4W stayed involved throughout the entire design and construction process, and the end result is a new section of trail that is every bit as challenging.

This project is a great example of how teamwork and cooperation between the land management agency, the Descanso Ranger District of the Cleveland National Forest (CNF), and the user group, the SD4W club, has resulted in a win-win situation for everyone. A very popular trail was able to be kept open with a new, challenging trail section added to replace an environmentally sensitive trail section that was closed and will be restored to natural conditions. Hopefully, this project can be a shining example to other agencies and other areas that trails don't just have to be closed but can be saved with a little hard work and cooperation.

On hand for the trail reroute dedication were representatives from the CNF, SD4W, and Trails Unlimited. As part of the dedication, SD4W President Joe Torres awarded commemorative plaques of appre-ciation to the Forest Service. One plaque was awarded to the Descanso Ranger District of the CNF in recognition of all the help from Tom Gillett, district ranger; Anne Carey, resource staff officer; and Angelica Cook, OHV manager for Corral Canyon. Another plaque was awarded to Trails Unlimited for all the expert help in design and construction from Cam Lockwood and Bert Finan. Tom Gillett awarded certificates of appreciation and Adventure Passes from the Forest Service to key volunteers who helped make all the events leading up to this day a success. The recipients were Don Brown and Ed Webster from SD4W and Alan Klumph from SDORC. Also on hand and receiving recognition for their contributions were Craig Cowie, recreation and lands officer for the CNF; John Stewart, natural resources consultant for California Association of 4WD Clubs and director of environmental affairs for United Four Wheel Drive Associations; and all the members of SD4W who put in many hours of hard work and sweat to help open the new trail.

After the trail dedication ceremony and ribbon cutting, everyone was treated to a barbecue lunch hosted by SD4W and SDORC. After the lunch and raffle came time for the first run on the new Bronco Peak Trail by all the four-wheelers in attendance. San Diego 4 Wheelers led the group to one of the entrances through the Bronco flats area. The new trail is quite challenging, with seven new obstacles and an exit suitable for only those in whom fear is not a factor.

By the end of the day it proved to be a rewarding and fun-filled time for everyone. Special thanks go out to everyone involved in all the activities leading up to and including this special day of celebration. A thank-you needs to go out to those who helped plan this day of celebration. In addition to those named above, they are Dorys & Dave Prentice (SD4W) and C.J. Stewart (Caring Trial Users).

Sources

San Diego 4 Wheelers
www.sd4wheel.com

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