Here is what we did in 2017 to keep the good times on the trail going:
...and we have fun doing it! Join us!
All Downieville area trails from Packer Saddle down to town are open and free of snow.
Tower 2 Town Trail is open with a few snow drifts.
The new Gold Valley Rim Trail is open with some snow drifts.
Sunrise is open with only a couple small drifts!
Empire is unknown.
Lavazolla is open to A tree.
It's been showering all week, the dirt is all time! Get up here!
Sunrise is still under snow
Butcher is open
Pauly is open
Big Boulder is clear
The new Gold Valley Rim Trail is probably covered in snow (not yet explored)
Henry and the trail crew are logging out the trails up to the snow line this week.
Gold Lakes Highway is clear of snow and open! And Packer Lake Road is clear to just past Packer lake!
It's been hot in town and the now is melting fast! The trails are clear up to around 6k right now (Divide Trails are open). Jake and Jason made it almost to the top of big boulder on Monday. We drove up craycroft to 5600ft before the snow was too deep to drive through. We also heard that the shuttle road is opened up to diablo campground
Rode Fiddle and Halls Ranch yesterday and they are better than they've ever been. Fiddle is dialed! Loam town!
We just worked on these trails and widened the super tight switchback for more flow.
We cleared the Divides (1st, 2nd, 3rd Divide) and North Yuba of trees and they are open.
Snow is still about a mile up Butcher.
The snow is melting really fast and with this warm rain things are going to open soon.
In the meantime we have been working on Halls Ranch and Fiddle Creek trails.
Check out our work here.
Lower and Upper First are all clear and running fast.
3rd is all clear second divide has a couple trees down.
Butcher is clear up to just above the waterfall.
North Yuba out of town is clear also.
Tacky dirt. No dust. No dust hidden rocks. Minimal dappelled light for clear viewing. Hoot and holler while riding right behind your buddies.
Bonus: Beautiful fall colors and cool temperatures.
Get it before the snow flies!
Update 10.24.17: A nice storm rolled through and made for amazing conditions last weekend. Conditions are still good. Should stay tacky up high until the end of the season.
Update 10.09.17: Dust is back, next rain will tamp it down.
Brown Pow photo taken this fall!
Sunrise - 1.9 miles - OPEN
Butcher Ranch - 4.0 miles - OPEN
Pauley Creek - 3.5 miles - OPEN
Big Boulder - 3.2 miles - OPEN
Third Divide- 2.8 miles - OPEN
Second Divide - 6.1 miles - OPEN
First Divide - 3.4 miles - OPEN
North Yuba -15.8 miles - CLOSED due to landslide 1 mile below Goodyears Bar - North Yuba Extension is open
Downie River - 3.5 miles - OPEN
Herkimer Mine/Bunker Hill - 2.7 miles OPEN
Rattlesnake Creek - 3.2 miles OPEN
Lavezzola Creek - 5.1 miles OPEN
Fiddle Creek Ridge - 6.0 miles - OPEN
Halls Ranch - 5.0 miles - OPEN and logged out, very brushy on the section that crosses Little Fiddle Creek
Chimney Rock - 4.8 miles - OPEN
Empire Creek - 2.5 miles - OPEN
Mills Peak - OPEN
Tamarack - OPEN
Upper Salmon - OPEN
Sierra Buttes - OPEN
Sardine Lake Overlook - OPEN
Deer Lake - OPEN
Oakland Pond - OPEN
Mt. Elwell - OPEN
Round Lake - OPEN
Bear Lakes Loop - OPEN
Grassy Lake Trail - OPEN
Long Lake - OPEN
Gray Eagle Creek - OPEN
Smith Creek - OPEN
Every year we clear, log out and repair the trails we love so much. The Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship trail crew goes through the trails top to bottom with the focus of eliminating braking bumps and rain ruts. We put dirt back in the trail where water and or traffic has moved it. This work involves pick, shovel, McLeod, Pulaski and compaction by hand and with a plate compactor.
3rd Divide Before
3rd Divide After
1st Divide Before
1st Divide After
Big Boulder Before
Big Boulder After
We document, what trails are open and when on a weekly basis during the snow melt in the spring and the coming of winter in the fall. Track this page for conditions in the shoulder seasons.
July 2, 2017
Sunrise trail is open!!! Riding all trail from the shuttle drop is on. All trails down to Downieville are open. It's on and low dust! Get up here!
June 26, 2017
Big Boulder is open. That means all trails below Sunrise trail are open: Butcher Ranch, Pauly Creek, and Big Boulder.
June 23, 2017
Only 1 snow drift now left to hike over to get to Butcher Ranch trail head (Butcher details below; June 22). We checked out Pauly Creek and it is running great, Baby Heads was awesome, the creek crossing is thigh high, and we are rebuilding the paver section so watch for construction. But it is 15-20 minutes of snow hiking to get to Pauly.
June 22, 2017
The snow hiking/riding from the shuttle drop off is just on the pavement to the top of Butcher Ranch Trail. The upper Butcher Ranch single track is logged out, but has some large snow drifts, but the Butcher Ranch OHV road is mostly free of snow, but has a few trees down. Big melt off is happening now - the snow drifts are shrinking so fast, days to a week to a full ride from the shuttle drop. Get the hero dirt before dust season! Mills Peak has been logged, is clear and has just a few drifts!
June 19, 2017
Snow is melting FAST! We are shuttling to the top of Packer Saddle and it only takes 10-20 minutes of snow hopping to make it to the hero dirt. Big Boulder is in great shape but you have to ride it as an out-and-back due to snow. Pauly Creek is having trees removed and rock work done at the moment and should be ready in a week or so. If you are riding up from Sierra City plan on about a mile of tough snow hiking to get to Packer Saddle.
June 16, 2017
We did a recon run of Butcher Ranch yesterday and found the snow hiking/riding from the shuttle drop off is just 35-45 minutes! The route is flagged and the more riders who go through, the faster the route will become. Big melt off coming this week!
June 15, 2017
The road has been plowed to the top! We are OPEN and running shuttles to the top this weekend. To get to the brown pow on the other side, will require about an hour of snow hiking. The snow level on the other side is at the Gorge. The route is flagged. With high temperatures coming this weekend and next week, we expect snow melt off at a brisk pace up from the Gorge.
June 12, 2017
We are OPEN and running shuttles this weekend. Currently the road is plowed to the Steep and Narrows below the pass and we have to drop riders there. The snow level on the other side is at the Gorge. The route is flagged. Quite an adventure. With high temperatures coming this weekend, we expect snow melt off at a brisk pace, and are lobbying to have the road plowed to the top. Soon.
Long Lake trail has big drifts and is a few weeks out.
June 8, 2017
The road to the top of Packer Saddle is now plowed to The Narrows (1 mile short of Packer Saddle). With the snow hiking that will need to be done, and a forecast of 40 degrees for Packer Saddle, we will not run shuttles to the top. We want our customers to keep their toes. :) We will run shuttles to the top the weekend of June 17th. 1st, 2nd and 3rd Divides are running great and we are running shuttles to 2nd and 3rd Divide trail heads this weekend.
Mills Peak jeep road has been cleared of a 15 trees and is free of snow. Another 10 trees were cleared up to the Rock Squeeze on the singletrack above the Log Landing. Much above that and you start hitting more trees and snow. Most downed trees I've ever seen up there. We'll keep at it. (Thanks Ron & Melinda Heard!)
While we wait for the snow to clear over the top of Elwell so we can use the southern approach, an out and back on the north side is quite doable. It only gets unpleasant and steep above the pond. Most folks never think to climb the north side, but it's great.
May 26, 2017
The snow is melting fast, 1 foot of snow melted in a week due to the heat. Packer Saddle is still buried and the road up is not plowed. Butcher is open 1 mile from The Waterfall, Big Boulder is open 3 miles above 3rd Divide (at the mine). 2nd and 3rd are logged, clear and running great.
May 12, 2017
We made it to the waterfall on Butcher Ranch/Downieville Downhill. The melt is on and the water is flowin. The Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship crew is clearing out downed trees and working with USFS crews to fix the trail.
March 15, 2017
Henry logged out 40 trees to open up 2nd and 3rd Divide Trails. 1st, 2nd and 3rd Divide Trails are free of snow and a go!
Snow + snow + moar snow = snow.
Yuba Expeditions is owned and managed by Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship. The proceeds from Yuba Expeditions go directly back into building and maintaining these trails. By taking our shuttle, or purchasing product from the shop, you are supporting the trails we all enjoy.
These trails are maintained by the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship in partnership with the Forest Service and other volunteer trail groups. Many of these trails are maintained as part of the Adopt-a-Trail Program administered and organized through the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship. The trail adoption program ensures that each individual trail receive regular maintenance and upkeep, each season.
The Stewardship also hosts monthly Trail Daze volunteer work days, these work days account for more than 30,000 volunteer labor hours on historic, multiple-use, and motorized multiple-use trails. If you enjoy riding high country trails in the Sierra Buttes region, then join us; as a volunteer, as a member, as a steward.