When Epic Rides’ Carson City Off-Road riders hit the trails this weekend they’ll be racing a new trail and riding another that’s significantly improved.
The new trail for the third annual mountain bike race is the 4-mile Marlette Flume Trail, made available by the Humboldt-Toiyabe Forest and the Spooner Lake State Park Ranger District, and the other route is the Secret Trail, recently reconstructed by Muscle Powered.
The Secret Trail, realigned from half a mile and 14.5 percent average grade to 1.3 miles and 6 percent grades, is entirely located on land owned by Carson City and is one of three trails Parks, Recreation & Open Space recently helped complete.
On National Trails Day earlier this month, Parks & Rec unveiled the Foothill Trail that starts at the Foothill Garden behind the Carson Tahoe Cancer Center on Medical Parkway and runs .6 miles until it meets up with the V&T Trail, the third new trail.
“It is making what they call a tranquility walk through the garden,” said Gregg Berggren, trails coordinator for Parks & Rec.
The trail was a collaboration between Parks & Rec and Carson Tahoe Health, whose staff is prescribing it to patients.
“A sign at the trailhead talks about health and wellness and the benefits of walking in nature,” said Berggren.
The V&T Trail is a half-mile trail that runs parallel to I-580 starting at Hobart Road in Lakeview.
“The V&T is a segment of what will ultimately be a very comprehensive rail trail connecting Reno to Minden on the historic V&T Railroad route,” said Berggren.
Both trails were made possible by Quality of Life funds and a slew of partners.
In addition to Parks & Rec and the hospital, the Greenhouse Project, which installed the garden, helped with amenities and landscaping. The Nevada Department of Transportation and the Eagle Valley Children’s Home, which participated in memory of Art Hannafin, provided easements on their properties. And Muscle Powered helped with design and took the lead on construction, while Carson High School Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps built a bridge.
The new trails complete 17 miles of legal trails in Carson City. Dozens more miles are regularly utilized but aren’t advertised because they cross private land and hikers and bike riders are technically trespassers.
Some of those trails may become available before the end of year if the city purchases 206 acres in the Timberline and Vicee Canyon area owned by Gerald and Luann Hamm. The city applied for and has been awarded a Land and Water Conservation Fund grant.
The city is working on two other big trails projects.
One is the Capital to Tahoe Trail, a 7-mile trail that’ll connect Carson City trails above Marlette Lake to the Tahoe Rim Trail.
Berggren hiked part of the proposed path last week with representatives from the U.S. Forest Service and the Nevada Department of Wildlife to determine the needed environmental studies.
The group followed the GPS track laid out by the designer, Muscle Powered’s Jeff Potter, and found some realignments might be necessary due to spotted owl and goshawk habitats.
The other ongoing trails project is Prison Hill, where a number of trails are being realigned.
“A lot of the trails are old roads,” said Berggren. “We want to realign them and make them all sustainable.”
The first trails were recently finished there, three miles called the north loop at the summit of Prison Hill that were eroding, which took Muscle Powered, led by Paul Sinnott, a year to complete.