8.16.2009

North Fork of the American River

First of all, a few links for those who are as interested as I...

North Fork American River Alliance (http://www.nfara.org/). This is a non-profit that one can contribute to help protect the North Fork of the American River.

Russel Towle A remembrance of Russel and his life.

Links to Russel's writings and natural history of the North Fork of the American River

I will add more posts on this subject as I become more involved.


The Slide Show of this Adventure







Euchre Bar
From North Fork American River - Euchre Bar - Lover's Leap


I was looking for a place to take my kids hiking a few weeks ago, somewhere near my home in Sacramento. I had made a pledge to myself to do more hiking and camping than I have done in years past and take advantage of the wonderful place I live near (1-2 hrs from many hiking areas in the Sierra Nevadas) and 1-5 hrs to the Pacific coast, depending on how far I want to drive. I had just completed a hike off of Hwy 50 in El Dorado National Forest (almost to Raymond's Lake). I had done another hike a good ways up I-80, off of the Big Bend exit. (I can't remember the trail, but it was good and went from 7000-8200 ft). I had also purchased both the El Dorado Forest and Tahoe National Forest Service maps and had spoke to someone that I used to work with on some good places to go hiking. I spread out my Tahoe NF map and started looking around the American River area. I knew that there were a North, Middle, and South Fork and have talked to a couple of people who did kayaking down some of them. Once I got a descent bearing of the topography, I checked on-line for any basic information that people have recently put out regarding their favorite hikes etc. Little did I know, but a person, Russel Towle, had spent a good chunk of his life hiking and maintaining trails within the North Fork of the American River. After reading a few of his blog entries, I decided on taking my kinds down the Euchre Bar trail. It was interesting to get to the trail head and then once there, we hiked down about 1/2 way (it's all down going down, thus all up, going up!)....and then my little girl decided to be defiant and touch the poison oak. This ended our trip down to the River for the afternoon.

Emigrant Gap Area

Once washed up, we did another excursion down Emigrant Gap through part of the forest, just checking out the land and seeing what was around. I have some good ideas for another hike.

Adventure to Lover's Leap

From North Fork American River - Euchre Bar - Lover's Leap


From North Fork American River - Euchre Bar - Lover's Leap


It being late, we decided to head back to Sacramento. As we got close to the Dutch Flat, we took the exit and headed south. I wanted to see if we could get to Lover's Leap, since the pictures I saw, were very spectacular!

We drove a bit, and then some more. Passed some very interesting homes throughout the woods along Moody Ridge, then came up to Lovers' Leap Ln. Took this for a bit and finished at the end which was Lover's Leap! I took my two kids carefully down to a look out. Snapped a picture to the West and then went to a small little path that led to a 2000' drop off to the East. Awesome! A hawk flew circles below us hanging on the thermals. We hopped back in the SUV (burb with 4WD, recommended or at least a high riding vehicle) and took off for home. There appears to be part of Moody Ridge that goes East from Lover's Leap Lane, but since I was down at the Alta exit off of I-80 and found a gate closing off the road with what appeared to be a security vehicle, I decided to return the same way I came (to Dutch Flat exit).

A very good trip all in all...

When I returned home, I broke my map out again to check some places where we went to and read some more about Russel Towle and his adventures.

I also came across the North Fork of the American River Alliance, which I am expecting to make a contribution to from now on.

This is a magnificent place and a place that I can spend countless hours on and hope to be the primary place to do some hiking, show my kids some wilderness, and give back to the mountainous environment which I love so much.

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