Monday, August 3, 2015

The Twisp River Drainage Trails Work

Turn west off Highway 20 in Twisp on to the Twisp River Road and within 25 miles you can reach a dozen or so trailheads strung along the Twisp River and its tributaries. These give access to some of the most wonderful trails in the Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest including the Lake Chelan Sawtooth Wilderness.

Last year, during and after the fires, these trails were shut off for four or five weeks. At the beginning of the 2015 season some of them had not been cleared of downfall from the 2013/2014 winter and some were further damaged by the storms that followed the 2014 fires. This has led to considerable challenges for opening the trails in 2015, especially as the Forest Service (FS) Methow Valley Ranger District Trail team has declined in numbers down to four people.

The efforts of volunteers from trail user groups such as MVBCH, Bike Alliance, and Washington Trails Association (WTA) have become increasingly important over the years. This year, if we want to be able to use a trail, we may have to cooperate in clearing and maintaining it. The latest update on these trails, which describes the work done this year to date (mid July 2015) to keep the Twisp River Trail System open to users may give some idea of the size of the task. The system consists of one low level trail and over a dozen back country trails. Click here to review the most recent information in the section titled "Trails in the Twisp River Drainage Update".

Working on the East Fork Buttermilk

Cutting to the Wilderness on War Creek
Assessing the EF Buttermilk slide area
Any way to get through this with a horse??
Just a few rocks fell on the EF Buttermilk!
The EF Buttermilk slide from a different angle
Oh yes, boulders fell on the EF Buttermilk trail too!
Finding a "walk around" on the North Lake trail was tricky!

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