Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Western Nevada County Master Trails Plan

The Western Nevada County Master Trails plan draft has been released. It is now up to you to make sure it is accurate.

There are some interesting aspects of this draft. For example, it specifies trail connectivity between Purdon Crossing and Hoyt Crossing (Highway 49) and Bridgeport. Imagine riding Washington all the way to Bridgeport? Connectivity is also specified between Round Mountain and Pioneer. Be sure to check out Appendix C.

As you may know, the county began this planning process early in 2009. The goal was to create a plan that detailed where trails are and where future trails should go. The latter is very important, as it will will guide necessary trail construction as development occurs in the future. In other words, if a potential trail is identified in this plan, any development that occurs within that corridor may need to facilitate new trail construction.

How can you help? Please look over the documents and submit comments. The 45-day public comment period will close on February 2, 2010 at 5:00 p.m. Please provide any comments you have to the following in writing:

Larkyn Feiler
Advance Planning Division
Nevada County CDA
950 Maidu Avenue, Suite 170
Nevada City, CA 95959

Monday, December 21, 2009

Bullard's is Clear

According to Joe Chavez of the Tahoe National Forest, all downed trees on Bullards Bar trails have been cleared out as of yesterday. Thanks Joe!

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Land Trust Trail Ride - Recap

A collection of Nevada County cyclists started from Auburn Street in Grass Valley on a tour of Land Trust-constructed trails as part of this month's BONC Gala Ride. The weather was cooperative one last day, allowing us to explore some of our best local trails.

The advanced group hit four Land Trust projects and even managed to pass by Bill Haire and company as they worked on the new trail along Rattlesnake Road. We rode a section of ditch that I've never hit before (behind Brunswick Basin heading toward the Litton Trail).

As usual, we doled out beer and food at the end of the ride. Thanks to Nick Jedenoff and Dave Hughes for help leading the ride and Darwin Leek for providing food and his office to stage the event. Please join us for our New Year's Day ride in Auburn.

Oh and if you want to donate to the Land Trust, here is how.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Rattlesnake Trail Extension

From Gene Haroldsen:

"The following two dates have been set for volunteer work parties to begin construction of the Rattlesnake Trail Extension within the County's Right of Way from North Highland to the Colfax Highway (SR 174):

10 a.m. to about 12 noon, Thursday, December 3rd - Volunteers need to meet at the intersection of North Highland Drive and Rattlesnake Road.

10:30 a.m. to about 12:30, Saturday, December 5th - Volunteers need to meet at the intersection of Lower Colfax Road and Rattlesnake Road.

The initial effort will involve grubbing the trail alignment. We will have an assortment of Nevada County Land Trust hand tools available but you are welcome to bring your own (i.e. lopper, Pulaski, McCloud, etc.) Please bring work gloves and anything you may wish to drink or eat.

For planning purposes it would be helpful if you could let me know if you plan to participate on either or both days. If you have questions or concerns, please contact me. Thank you for your interest and support of this joint Rattlesnake Neighborhood Association / Nevada County Land Trust project."

New Trail Near Pioneer Planned

While picking up a Christmas tree from their farm, I spoke with Willie and Sue Bruisin about plans for a new 1/2 mile trail that will descend down to the Rock Creek Nature Study Area from Pioneer. Working with the USFS, the Gold Country Trails Council (GCTC) is spearheading this effort. The trail is flagged and once the EA docs are done, the GCTC will be looking for donations or grant funding to build this trail. The plan is to use California Conservation Corps for construction.

The new trail will replace the existing steep trail that descends from Pioneer from almost directly above the Rock Creek NSA. Though this existing trail is fun to ride and challenging, traffic down it has exposed a 4" cable that poses a serious hazard to trail users. Personally, I am OK with this change if it means that no one becomes injured. Plus, the new trail will be longer anyway.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

New Year's Day Ride

BONC will hook up with FATRAC and Hammering Wheels for a News Year's Day ride. Join this big fun group event and see how well you ride with a hangover.

As usual, we'll offer different levels for riders. The advanced group will ride from the top of Stagecoach (Russell Road) at 9:00 (map). Intermediate and novice/beginners will start at 10:00 at parking area across from Drivers Flat on Foresthill Road (map). All rides will end ~1:00 and we'll offer some food for participants.

Please consider bringing something to share (soda, cookies, pie, chips, ham, salad, cake, etc.). See you there!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Tour du Bill Haire - Sat. December 5th @ 10AM

Did you know that the Nevada County Land Trust has built miles of trails close to town? For the next BONC Gala ride, we'll celebrate these beautiful, fun trails by a riding bunch of them. Think of this as the Tour du Bill Haire :-)

Please meet at Back Body and Beyond (Darwin's office) at 605 South Auburn Street in Grass Valley (see map) at 10AM on Saturday December 5th.

We'll offer various ride options from *advanced to beginner*. The beginner group will be a No-Rider-Left- Behind ride. When we finish, we'll gather to enjoy some complimentary food prepared by BONC. Please bring a bike, helmet, water and mid-ride snacks. If you want to join BONC, we'll have memberships available. As usual, we could use volunteers for this ride, including ride leaders, food bakers and someone to hang out at our booth during the ride. Let me know if you can help out, thanks!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Local Cycling Collaboration

Thanks to all who joined BONC for beer and ice cream last night! We had great turnout and a lot of fun. I especially enjoyed hearing about future collaborations between SEBC/SERT, YBONC, APPT, BONC and others. There was consensus that our whole is larger that the sum of our parts and that local cycling advocacy efforts are more effective when we coordinate our efforts. We'll explore this more in the coming months. We are lucky in that our little area has such proactive groups.

BONC membership has doubled this year, which I like to think is because of our increased effectiveness as a social/advocacy organization. I would like to double our membership again in 2010 by offering even more to our community.

On a related note, BONC is in need of a membership coordinator. This is a modest obligation that would allow you the opportunity to interact with other cyclists and focus on increasing and retaining our members. If you are at all interested, please let me know, thanks!

Monday, November 09, 2009

Round Mountain Re-Route: Done

BONC had a super productive, fun day finishing up the Up-and-Over Trail re-route on Round Mountain today. We improved the new trail, closed the steep old section, installed a swanky new sign, moved some boulders to block motos and put in a feature or two. We also had a killer ride in near-perfect conditions.

For through traffic, please use the new trail: it needs to be used and compacted. Coyote Point is now the destination of a spur trail. The new trail will now re-vegetate and settle in over the winter and by spring, it will start to look like singletrack.

A big thanks to all the volunteers, BLM and the Round Mountain neighbors for making this happen. More great things are in store for RM soon, so stay tuned.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Converting Lower Pioneer to Singletrack

I've started discussions with CalTrans and the USFS about the potential of rerouting Pioneer to singletrack between the Five Mile House and Lone Grave. They are amenable thus far, though the USFS would consider this a low priority project. I understand this perspective, as there are many other worthy projects on their plate, including the undergoing re-route of Upper Pioneer as it descends to Bear Valley.

I am looking at this as a long term project. Such endeavors inevitably take much longer to plan and implement than we would like, but I think this is a worthy one. Imagine being able to ride swoopy, tight singletrack right from Harmony Ridge Market. It would be a much better trail experience so close to town. I do imagine it will be years before we turn dirt on this project, so patience and perseverance are key.

If you want to learn more about this or other activities of BONC, please attend our upcoming meeting. Join the BONC list for details or we can chat about it at Saturday's event at Round Mountain.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Pioneer Musings

Today, I had the privilege of riding the entire length of the Pioneer Trail as part of a Grouse Ridge-to-Nevada-City epic. During the 4+ hours on this ride, I spent some time thinking about this trail and its importance to our community.

If you are like me, you tend to take Pioneer for granted, at least occasionally. It is such a common thoroughfare for our rides that its familiarity can diminish its specialness. Thing is, it is a very special trail and it is becoming even more exceptional.

In recent years, volunteers have joined forces with the USFS to build an entirely new singletrack portion of this trail as it descends down to Bear Valley. With recent rains, newly constructed sections have begun to settle in nicely. Eventually, the reroute will feature singletrack that will be the finest anywhere around here.

Pioneer is also the backbone of all Highway 20 corridor trails. Trails at Scott Flat, Burlington Ridge, Washington Conservation Camp, Spaulding Lake, Grouse Ridge and more are all accessible from Pioneer. We are all in debt to the Gold Country Trails Council, who made the Pioneer Trail happen over the past few decades.

Who knows what the future holds for Pioneer. After the Bear Valley re-route, I would love to see wider sections of Lower Pioneer converted to singletrack. And of course, Bill Haire dreams of Pioneer descending closer to Nevada City. One thing is for certain, the success of all such improvements will be dependent on volunteers like you.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Trimming Our Trails

This post is nearly identical to one from last year, but heck, it bears repeating.

As the windy, wet season returns, please consider carrying small trimming tools during rides/hikes. A few minutes clipping and sawing here and there collectively makes a big difference. For example, I've taken out lots of overgrowth on Osborne Hill over the years during hikes with my dogs. My tools of choice are hand clippers, a folding saw and these incredibly light, powerful loppers that fit in my Camelbak.

Then again, if you dig the camaraderie, fun and free food/beer offered by group trail work days, join us at Round Mountain on Saturday November 7th.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Unified Trail Day and Round Mountain

BONC had a very successful Unified Trail Day, pairing up with the Nevada County Woods Riders, Sierra Express, Gold Country Trails Council, mtb race teams and others to make short work of big trail improvements at Burlington Ridge. Thanks to everyone who participated. Mountain bikers were able to make a significant showing of manpower on this day, which bodes well for our reputation. Events this large require careful planning and infrastructure. Special thanks to Fred Bergman who orchestrated BONC's involvement. It was a great day!

Yesterday, Rob Heller and I took a look at the rough trail cut in by the BLM above the Coyote Point overlook. Though the bench cut looks something like a fireroad now, given some solid trail work, a season's worth of rain and time to re-vegetate, this section will be solid singletrack. It will be key for us to put finishing work on it before the long winter, so please join us on November 7th as we work on this trail and ride Round Mountain.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Good News for Empire Mine

Great news regarding trails at Empire Mine SHP. According to Ron Munson, "this is a very encouraging signal that the Osborn Hill Trail Network Project is poised to start possibly in November, so hopefully we can look forward to reopening much of the Osborn Hill area in the not-too-distant future." In other words, trails that have been fenced off for years now may
be re-opened soon and we will see new trails as well :-)


For Immediate Release: Contact: Sheryl Watson, Information Officer
October 10, 2009 (916) 997-7898

Empire Mine State Historic Park
Temporary Trail Closure

WHO: Trail User Alert at Empire Mine State Historic Park
WHAT: A California State Parks crew will be installing a temporary stream crossing, with culverts, at Empire Mine State Historic Park in preparation for the Osborn Hill Trail Network Project. This first step in the project implementation will enable crews and equipment to access the trails being rehabilitated and redesigned, due to begin this Fall. The stream crossing is
being completed in keeping with the California Department of Fish and Game and the US Army Corps of Engineers permit specifications.
WHEN: Tuesday through Thursday, October 13 – 15, 2009
WHERE: Where the Hardrock Trail crosses Little Wolf Creek, 100 feet east of
the intersection with the Osborn Hill Loop Trail.

PLEASE NOTE: Extra caution is advised for all trail users at Empire Mine State Historic Park where heavy equipment hauling materials will be working and visibility may be limited. Please pay attention to all warning signs and directions from park staff. Thank you for helping us move forward with
this exciting trail project, and stay safe.

Ron Munson
California State Park Superintendent
Sierra Gold Sector
(530) 273 - 3212

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

BONC Gala Ride - Saturday, 10/3

Please join us on the monthly BONC ride on Saturday, October 3rd @ *9AM* (note the start time). We'll ride trails in the Highway 20 corridor, including some lesser known fun sections. Meet near the Harmony Ridge Market on the north side of the highway.

We'll offer various ride options from *advanced to beginner*. The beginner group will be a No-Rider-Left-Behind ride. When we finish, we'll gather to enjoy some complimentary food prepared by BONC. Please bring a bike, helmet, water and mid-ride snacks. If you want to join BONC, we'll have memberships available.

As usual, we could use volunteers for this ride, including ride leaders, food bakers and someone to hang out at our booth during the ride. Let me know if you can help out, thanks.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Round Mtn Trailwork and Ride - Sat, November 7th

Join BONC as we put the finishing touches on a re-route of the Up-and-Over Trail on Round Mountain. Meet on Saturday, November 7th @ 10AM just off Rock Creek Road (map). We'll break at 1PM and then have our BONC Gala ride starting on the trail we just help build!

This project will divert the main trail away from the Coyote Point Overlook. The overlook will still be accessible, but the current trail will become a spur trail. The main trail will continue above the overlook and reconnect with the existing trail. A few hundred yards of trail will be re-created. The BLM has already roughed in this trailbed, which some of you have seen. BONC will finish up this trail on 11/7. Working with Round Mountain neighbors, BONC has spearheaded this project.

Please join us for this event. We'll offer food and drinks for participants. Please bring long pants, shoes and gloves and of course water, helmet and snacks for your ride.

Unified Trail Days - October 10,11

Register for this event!

Please join us for the 2009 Unified Trail Days. This year, we will improve Burlington Ridge trails east of Nevada City on October 10th and 11th from 9AM till 1PM. Pick which day is best for you. A free BBQ lunch will be served on Saturday.

Staging area will be at Chalk Bluff Road & Hwy. 20, east of Nevada City.

Don’t forget your gloves, snack and water for the trail work. Wear closed toed shoes and long pants. We will be clearing brush, rocks and dirt. If you have a shovel, rake or McCloud please bring them. Note that the heavy work will already be completed :-) Bring your family, friends, Boy and Girl Scout Troops to help out. We need volunteers for trail work, food prep and clean up.

This project is sponsored by the Nevada County Wood Riders, Gold Country Trail’s Council, BONC and the USFS. This is an important opportunity to partner with these other user groups and demonstrate that local mountain bikers are an essential part of the trail building community. Please join us.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

September BONC Gala Ride: Fun!

We had a great time and a great turnout (~25 people) for yesterday's BONC Gala Ride. We rode Pioneer Trail and explored other trails in this area. Free watermelon, bagels and beer was had. I met a lot of cool new people and enjoyed some great conversations. I am stoked to see this event growing more successful each month. Thanks to everyone who helped out. Pictures.

Please join us for the next Gala ride on Saturday, October 3rd. Stay tuned for details.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Tahoe Trail Event is Sah-weet!

We had a fantastic weekend on riding and trail construction at Tahoe this weekend. Some 70-80 volunteers completed a lengthy section of the Donner Lake Rim Trail, including some very impressive rock work. All sorts of rides occurred, including Sawtooth, Tahoe Rim Trail, Dirty Harry, Tahoe Meadows and more. Much swag was given out at the campground and New Belgium provided large volumes of free tasty beer. It was an incredible success. Pictures.

If you have a account, you can see some pictures of the trailwork and riding.

Tremendous thanks to New Belgium Brewing, Fox Racing, Truckee Donner Land Trust, BONC, FATRAC, ROMP, BTCEB, MBOSC and others.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

BONC September Gala Ride - 9/5

Please join us on the monthly BONC ride on Saturday, September 5th @ *9AM* (note the start time). We'll ride trails in the Highway 20 corridor, including some lesser known fun sections. Meet near the Harmony Ridge Market on the north side of the highway.

We'll offer various ride options from *advanced to beginner*. The beginner group will be a No-Rider-Left-Behind ride. When we finish, we'll gather to enjoy some complimentary food prepared by BONC. Please bring a bike, helmet, water and mid-ride snacks. If you want to join BONC, we'll have memberships available.

As usual, we could use volunteers for this ride, including ride leaders, food bakers and someone to hang out at our booth during the ride. Let me know if you can help out, thanks.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

More Trails at Loma Rica Ranch

Jet Lowe continues to work with Bill Haire and others to build cool new trails at Loma Rica Ranch. The group could use your help. From Jet:

"Please join us for a couple hours of evening trail work. We have bug spray, technu, drinks, and homemade blackberry cobbler. Enjoy the rest of the evening under the gazebo. Please dress appropriately with long pants, long sleeve shirt, hat, etc. Status: Finished 3 of 5 single tracks

Dates: July 27-28
Time: 6pm
Location: Loma Rica Ranch, meet at Farm Stand
10980 Brunswick Rd.Grass Valley, CA"

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Loney Meadows Trailwork

From the Gold Country Trails Council:


This is close to home and a beautiful area to ride. Camping is in an unimproved area, but does have a creek near by for stock water. You will need to high line your horse, tie to the trailer or bring your own portable corral. Start the weekend on Friday or come early Saturday for the 9:00 AM departure of the work party.

The trail work will be construction of the trail that will connect Loney Meadow with the Bowman Lake/Mountain trail. A section of that trail was obliterated by past logging in the area. In the event that the Forest Service (Joe Chavez) does not approve of the proposed route (inspection will take place July 23) the alternate work will be trail clearing. A section of the trail from the meadow to Rock Lake is quite overgrown. Please come prepared with loppers, hand saws, shovels, rakes, etc. Wear appropriate clothing...long sleeves, sturdy shoes, hat..bring water, sun screen, and your enthusiasm!

If you have not been to this area before, this is a great opportunity for introduction. If you not a camper, come for the day, as the distance is not too great. Travel time is about 1 & 1/2 hours from Grass Valley and it is a scenic drive. Take Hwy 20 east. (that is towards Reno) Left on Bowman Road. Travel about 10 miles on paved road. Just after the pavement turns to gravel look for a battered brown forest sign on the right for Loney Meadow. As you drive up that road, stay to the left at the fork. The short climb brings you out into a graveled area. Proceed to the right and across and then left on the continuation of the road to Loney Meadow. As you enter back into the more treed area, camping is on both sides of the road.

Please RSVP to Teri Personeni 273-9144. If you are camping please plan a pot luck dish for Saturday night dinner.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Pioneer Trail Ride - August 1st

Please join us on the monthly BONC ride on Saturday, August 1st @ *9AM* (note the start time). We'll ride trails in the Highway 20 corridor, including some lesser known fun sections. Meet near the Harmony Ridge Market on the north side of the highway.

We'll offer various ride options from *advanced to beginner*. The beginner group will be a No-Rider-Left-Behind ride. When we finish, we'll gather to enjoy some complimentary food prepared by BONC. Please bring a bike, helmet, water and mid-ride snacks. If you want to join BONC, we'll have memberships available.

As usual, we could use volunteers for this ride, including ride leaders, food bakers and someone to hang out at our booth during the ride. Let me know if you can help out, thanks.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

BONC Comments on Osborne Hill Development Plan

The Osborne Hill area adjacent to Empire Mine State Historic Park contains a valuable network of trails. For years, BONC has worked hard to advocate for the preservation of this trail system. Below is the letter BONC submitted to the Nevada County planning department in response to plans to develop the area. A big thank you to Nick George who spearheaded our most recent efforts.

BONC constantly works to improve and preserve local riding opportunities such as Osborne Hill. Please support our efforts by joining or renewing your membership today. As a 501c3, we also accept tax-deductible donations.


Bicyclists of Nevada County (BONC)
P.O. Box 1311
Nevada City CA 95959
Nicholas George - Secretary
John J. Gardiner - Chairman

July 9, 2009

Mr. Tod Herman
Senior Planner
County of Nevada
950 Maidu Ave
Nevada City, CA 95959

SUBJECT: comments on Draft EIR for Osborne Hill, SCH No. 2006122098

Dear Mr. Herman:

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the May 2009 Draft EIR for the proposed development of Osborne Hill, SCH No. 2006122098

With many in our community, the Board of Directors of Bicyclists of Nevada County (BONC) have serious concerns with the development's impact on existing trails frequented by non-motorized users. The proposed development covers an area containing a trail network, long valued and utilized by area residents. Our mapping confirms more than seven miles of existing trails. (This total under-represents trail lengths, given the labyrinth of such trails on Osborne Hill).

BONC is pleased to note that consideration of trails have been given substantial attention in the DEIR, with some 257 occurrences of the word "trail" within 16 documents (not including Appendix 15.11). This qualitative treatment notwithstanding, the plan is short on several key specific mitigation measures. After the development is completed, users want to be left with trails of similar length, character, and connectivity. The objective of all new trails should be to maintain connectivity to trails outside the development that is lost by the construction of homesites, roads, sewage treatment facilities, utilities, etc. Without maintaining connectivity, the loss of the trails becomes significant for trail users because they can no longer get from "here to there". Trails that merely circulate within the development are inadequate mitigation.

As shown in Table 3-8 of the DEIR, the only proposed trail with wildland characteristics (orange line "Proposed new multi-use trail"), at roughly one mile in length, is far too short to be considered adequate mitigation for the loss of more than seven miles of existing non-motorized trails. BONC concludes that the single orange line "Proposed new multi-use trail" is inconsistent with the claim on Page 3-22 that the developer's proposal is a "replacement" for the loss of more than seven miles of trails.

As a single trail connecting Osborne Hill Road (on the West) with the PG&E transmission line maintenance road (on the East), the Table 3-8 orange line "Proposed new multi-use trail", is vulnerable to user type restrictions, as provided for in Section 5.4-32. For these reasons, BONC insists that at least three "Proposed new multi-use trails" be required of the developer, so that should a trails management plan recommend the segregation of user groups on different trails (equestrians separate from pedestrians, separate from bicyclists), connectivity will not be lost for any user group. Ref: Section 5.4 "Bicycle and Pedestrian System". Ref: Appendix 15.11 Open Space and Habitat Management Plan.

The edge-of-road and edge-of-homesite trail (Table 3-8 blue line "Proposed new roadside trail') is significantly different in character from the orange line, in that it does not provide a wildland user experience; therefore it is not appropriate mitigation for loss of wildland trails. BONC notes that edge-of-homesite trails are often encroached upon by homeowner activity. The ridgetop section of blue line trails in Table 3-8 (and Appendix 15.11, Table 4) does not appear to meet the intent of the requirement in for 50 foot vegetative privacy buffer between trail and development, as Elder Drive and Lots 7, 8, 9, and 10 are all part of the "development". Ref: Appendix 15.11 Open Space and Habitat Management Plan, Page 29.

Leaving trails management to a Homeowner's Association doesn't work, because there is an inherent conflict of interest between trails easement enforcement, and residents who may not yet be enlightened enough to value trails adjoining their property boundaries, especially if such trails are used by "outsiders". Ref: Section 8-21, MM 5.7-8i. Homeowner's Associations have little motivation to spend time and money for trails used by non-residents, or not used by residents.

Trails management should be performed by a separate entity, such as a Nevada County Parks and Recreation District, a land trust (perhaps the Nevada County Land Trust), or a non-profit, such as BONC. Funding for trails management needs to come from an assured source (such as taxes or an endowment), not merely a variable assessment to development's residents, that is vulnerable to reduction by votes of a Homeowner's Association. Until such time as management is transferred to one of these entities, specific audits for compliance to the CC&Rs need to be conducted, as recommended in Appendix 15.11 Open Space and Habitat Management Plan, Part 1, Page 9.

The recommendations for Trails Management contained in Appendix 15.11 Part III, Pages 21-26, while laudable, are only recommendations. What actually happens (or does not happen) on the ground can be very different, without enforcement and auditing by an outside entity.

We ask that the County of Nevada insist that the developer resubmit a new plan that more adequately addresses these issues.

Thank you for your consideration.


Nicholas George
Secretary, Bicyclists of Nevada County
(a 501c3 corporation)

Monday, July 06, 2009

July BONC Gala Ride Recap

As expected, we had a modest turnout for the July 4th BONC monthly gala ride, but what we lacked in numbers, we made up in sheer fun.

Starting from the USFS ranger station, we played around on some very cool features at Noab for a while. I've ridden more skinnies this weekend than during the previous 12 months. We left before anyone got hurt and then headed up Snow Mountain Ditch > Taxi Cab. TC sees much less traffic now that Miner's is mostly singletrack, but it is still a cool trail that provides a nice alternative. We rode Pioneer, looped around the Rock Creek Nature area and headed back down the hill.

Do you have a ride venue in mind for a future gala ride? Let us know and maybe we can make it happen.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

BONC Gala Ride for July - Nevada City

Please join us on the monthly BONC ride on Saturday, July 4th @ 10AM out of Nevada City! We'll ride some better and lesser known trails from town, including the reinvigorated Noab area.

We'll offer various ride options from *advanced to beginner*. The beginner group will be a No-Rider-Left-Behind ride. When we finish, we'll gather to enjoy some complimentary food prepared by BONC. Please bring a bike, helmet, water and mid-ride snacks. If you want to join BONC, we'll have memberships available. See you there! Meet at the USFS Ranger Station off Coyote Street.

NOTE: We need volunteers for this ride, including ride leaders, food bakers and someone to hang out at our booth during the ride. Let me know if you can help out, thanks.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Osborne Hill Trails Need Your Support

If you are concerned about the fate of the Osborne Hill property and the trails therein, please consider attending the county planning commission meeting on this Thursday (6/25) at 1:30PM at the Rood Center in Nevada City.

As many of you know, this property is adjacent to Empire Mine State Historic Park and has many trails. The developer wants to create a subdivision of 76 high end homes, plus additional buildings, a county-run-and-maintained septic system and a new paved road from the top of the hill out to Rattlesnake that will bisect existing trails.

** The County should hear about how important these trails are to the community **

If you cannot attend, please consider submitting written comments by July 2nd, addressed to:

Todd Herman
950 Maidu Ave,
Nevada City, CA 95959

Support New Trails at Hidden Falls

From our friends at FATRAC:

The environmental report is out for the Hidden Falls expansion and the public comment period has begun!

The county is proposing new trails and we should support this proposal. Attend a workshop on Tuesday June 23 at 6:30 pm to hear information on the project at the Mt. Pleasant Grange Hall, 3333 Mt. Pleasant Road, Lincoln. A public hearing to receive comments is set for Thurs July 9 at 10:50 a.m. at the NEW Planning Commission Hearing Room (old DeWitt).

  1. Attend the hearing (see above)
  2. Submit written comments by July 31. Please mail any comments to: Maywan Krach, Environmental Coordination Services, Placer Co Community Development Resource Agency, 3091 County Center Drive, Ste 190, Auburn, CA 95603. Thank Placer County for supporting multi-use trails in Auburn! Say you are looking forward to seeing more miles added to the existing trails and that you'll join volunteer efforts to help maintain them.
  3. Learn more by viewing the draft EIR:
Act now to support new local trails!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Trails at Loma Rica Ranch?

It is true, but we need your help to make it happen. Loma Rica Ranch wants to support young mountain bikers by permitting YBONC and the community to create designated bike trails on their property.

Jet Lowe of YBONC and Bill Haire will host a trail building day on June 27 and 28th from 9AM to 4PM. Show up and volunteer as much as you would like.

Please bring tools, gloves, wear long pants, etc. YBONC will provide lunches, drinks, water, and anti-poison oak stuff.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Trails: Celebrations and Conditions

I took in some quality experiences on the trail the weekend that made me step back and recognize how lucky I am to live up here.

Today, I did a solo ride out of White Cloud campground (see map) where I started up Pioneer, rode past Skillman, then cut into Burlington Ridge to enjoy some fantastic singletrack conditions. The recent heavy rains have settle things down nicely up there and yesterday's equestrian Poker ride left little impact. The motos trails that are usually duffy for the rest of the summer are packed down, at least for now. The highlight of the ride was descending Hallelujah, which was (pardon the pun) a near religious experience. So head up there now and enjoy it before it becomes a dustbowl again until next winter.

Yesterday, I hooked up the the National Trails day BONC ride at Deadman's Flat (photos). As with last years event, this celebration is proof of how many people in our community love trails and want to build more of them. Sometimes, it is easy to lose perspective of this as you collaborate primarily with one kind of user group. But there are strength in numbers and we should leverage this community as much as possible.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Family Bike Fest - Nevada City - 6/20

NOTE: This event has been canceled.

There sure are a lot of great local events happening this summer and here is yet another one:

The Family Bike Fest on Saturday, June 20th is intended to promote friends and families on bikes, and to publicize what's happening in our community with biking, and biking stories from racers. It all happens out of Pioneer Park/Seaman's Lodge in Nevada City.

Program Schedule
2-3pm Registration, Bike Rodeo, Bike Safety Check
3-4pm 2 Bikes Rides to and from Pioneer Park (1 hr round trip, bring helmet and water bottle)
4-5pm Hydrate Hour, Start of Raffle and Silent Auction
5-6pm Dinner/Speaker Program
2-6pm Bike Swap Hours

Ride Cost: $10 Adults, $5 riders ages12-18, Free for under 12 y.o.
Dinner/Speaker: $30 Adults, $15 ages 12-18 y.o., $5 under 12 y.o.
Raffle Tickets: $2 each, 3 for $5 (see grand prize below)
Bike safety check & rodeo FREE!
Bike Swap entrance FREE!

Peggy Smith - reason how YBONC got started
Jason Moeschler - 3x National Team Member, 1997 Jr. Champ, 3x Downieville Pro Winner
Carole Carson - author of Fat2Fit, now a national challenge a
Chris McGovern -Former Pro Cyclist for Jelly Belly Race Team, road, mountain and cyclocross racer
Greg Hermanson and Christine Weir - NUHS MTB Team

Other Information
Cost proceeds go to youth mentoring and school bike club programs.
VitaminWater supporting drinks for bike riders.
Safety Bike Checks by Tour of NC Bicycles, and REI of Roseville
View maps of proposed and completed bike lanes in Nevada County

Grand Prize is 2009 GIANT Anthmem Advanced, Full Suspension Frame, Size L ($1880 Retail)
(Each dinner purchase includes one raffle ticket for Grand Prize)

Winners must be present for raffle and silent auction.

Registration Deadline: June 15, 2009, 5pm

For ride/dinner/speaker, send email to:, request registration/waiver form in subject line.

For bike swap space, send email to: ncbikeswap at gmail dot com, request bike swap info in subject line.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Tahoe Trail Event - August 14 - 16

Register for this event!

Looking for some super fun Tahoe mountain biking this summer? BONC has just the event for you. Join us for a weekend of fun riding, camping, friendship, trail building and free beer on August 14 - 16!

Official dates are Friday 8/14th through Sunday 8/16th, with organized rides Friday night through Sunday. We'll have a range of ride levels and paces from very social to very challenging, along with gorgeous scenery and other recreation options.

On Saturday the 15th we'll build trail on the Donner Lake Rim Trail and ride later in the afternoon. We're also planning rides on the 13th & 14th for early arrivals - probably Armstrong Pass area with a Mr. Toads option on Thursday, and Mt. Rose/Flume/TRT area on Friday.

We'll be camping in the Tahoe State Recreation Area on Lake Tahoe; the campground has showers and is on Lake Tahoe in Tahoe City. It's not a wilderness experience – but on the other hand there are restaurants, shops, rafting/tubing on the Truckee River and swimming nearby - lots to do in addition to riding!

A suggested donation of $10 per person will cover our camping expenses. More details to come, so stay tuned. This event is in partnership with the Truckee Donner Land Trust, FATRAC, ROMP, MBOSC and other groups.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Not Too Late for Trail Plan Input

Some of you stopped by the Briar Patch last night to contribute your trail knowledge to the Western Nevada County Non-motorized Recreational Trails Master Plan (whew... that is a mouthful). I arrived later and it was great to see our collective annotations to these maps. I saw some existing trail routes I did not know about, which made the maps fascinating to review.

If you missed last night's session, you can still participate. According to the County:

Upcoming Public Workshop: The Planning Department will be hosting a public workshop on Monday June, 1 2009 in the Nevada County Board of Supervisors Chambers to initiate the 45 day comment period for the draft trails plan, map, and proposed mitigated negative declaration. The workshop will include a staff presentation and an opportunity to review large scale maps and provide comments. This meeting will mark the beginning of a week dedicated to National Trails Day event on June 6, 2009. There will be information related to this project available at the National Trails Day event.

Let's keep up our participation in this initiative to make sure that new local trails are built and existing trails are improved!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Your Trail Knowlege Needed

Imagine that by just drawing a trail on a map, that trail becomes sanctioned, legal and perhaps even funded. That would be sweet, eh?

This is the potential opportunity available to us. You can do your small part by stopping by the Briar Patch on Tuesday, May 19th at anytime between 5:30 - 7:30PM and spending *a few minutes* marking up a map of our area. Your contributions will be considered as the County finalizes the Western Nevada Master Trail Plan.

This plan will guide trail construction and planning into the future, so it is super important that we contribute our requests and knowledge. We are especially looking for the people that had input into the recreation master plan 10 or so years ago.

Again, this will just take a few minutes of your time and could make a HUGE difference down the road for us.


Brair Patch conference room
Just 5-10 minutes of your time
Anytime between 5:30 and 7:30PM
Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A big thanks to Hyland Fisher for leading this.

BONC Gala Ride for June - Dead Man's Flat and National Trails Day

Please join us for the monthly BONC ride and a celebration of National Trails Day on Saturday, June 6th @ 10AM.

This month's ride venue is the inimitable Deadman's Flat (just west of Grass Valley). We'll offer various ride options from advanced to beginner. As always, the beginner group will be a No-Rider-Left-Behind Ride. When we finish, we'll gather to enjoy some complimentary food prepared by BONC. Please bring a bike, helmet, water and mid-ride snacks.

After the ride, feel free to join us as we celebrate National Trails Day with the Nevada County Land Trust and other area groups. More details to come, but this fun event is open to everyone (riders and non-riders alike).

Meet at the Twin Cities Church parking lot @ 10AM to ride or at the noon at the same location for just the National Trails Day event. See you there!

Friday, May 08, 2009

National Trails Day - June 6th

Join us on Saturday June, 6th for a celebration of trails in our area. The Nevada County Land Trust is leading a celebration similar to last year's event. The general plan is:

10:00 am to Noon - Hiking/biking/riding/other activities at a variety of locations

12:30 – 1:30 - Gathering of groups to celebrate the day in the parking lot of Twin Cities Church on Ridge Road in Grass Valley

The event is open to everyone and will be very inspirational and fun. Participating groups will probably include BONC, City of Nevada City, County of Nevada County, Friends of Deer Creek, Gold Country Trails Council (morning ride only) and others. Stay tuned for more details!

Monday, May 04, 2009

Trail Optimization: South Yuba

It has become something of a tradition. Every spring, a bunch of volunteers combine efforts to clear the South Yuba trail of poison oak, downed trees, fallen boulders and the like. This year is no exception. Mike Haire, PJ Madigan, Dave Lawell, George Maier and others are in the process of clearing this trail for 2009.

If you see these folks around town, please thank them. The South Yuba is in a remote area and sees little maintenance from government agencies. Poison oak can be nightmarish in the canyon if it is not pared back and obstacles can block or damage the trail for months or years without the aid of these volunteers. Thanks!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

State Parks: No Changes to Trail Plan

State Parks has responded to BONC's request to amend a trail plan and the answer is no.

As you may know, State Parks plans to implement changes to trails at Empire Mine. After attending public meetings and studying the plan, BONC found many of the proposed changes to be worthy of our support, but other parts of the plan to be worrisome, as certain trails were to be decommissioned. BONCers and others sent in many comments to address these concerns.

The initial response to our letters was disappointing in that State Parks offered to make no changes whatsoever to the plan. We followed and expressed our disappointment in a formal letter from BONC.

State Parks has finally responded and the news is not good. Again, they make no offers to amend any section of the plan. View the letter (2.4MB PDF).

Saturday, April 11, 2009

South Yuba Ride - May 2nd

Please join us on the monthly BONC ride on Saturday, May 2th @ 10AM on the South Yuba Trail!

This is a special ride, as the Redding Mountain Bike Club will join us. We'll offer various ride options from *advanced to beginner*. The beginner group will be a No-Rider-Left-Behind ride. When we finish, we'll gather to enjoy some complimentary food prepared by BONC. My daughter is threatening to bake and sell some of her cookies, so bring some $ and your sweet tooth.

Please bring a bike, helmet, water and mid-ride snacks. If you want to join BONC, we'll have memberships available. See you there!

Meet near the South Yuba Campground (in the parking lot with the BLM toilets). Getting there:

From Nevada City, follow Highway 49 to North Bloomfield Road. At 7 miles, you'll cross the one lane bridge. At this point, it is approximately 1 1/2 miles on a dirt/gravel road to the campground. Note that cell phones do not work in this area. Map of the area (1MB, PDF):

BONC Now a 501c3

Today, BONC received notification from the IRS that our organization is a legitimate 501c3 non-profit! What does this mean? We can now apply for grants to fund trail projects. Also, donations to our group are tax deductible.

Credit for landing this non-profit status goes to Shannon Wright. The approval process can take up to a year, but Shannon completed an application that was so complete and professional that the federal government approved it almost immediately. Shannon worked very hard on this. Big kudos to her!

I look forward to applying for grants for various projects. If you have grant writing skills you care to donate to our causes, please let us know.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

BONC: Party and a Movie

Bicyclists of Nevada County is hosting a fun get together for members, former members, friends, and, well, *all* Nevada County mountain bicycle riders on Saturday, May 9th at 6:30PM. You and your friends are invited!

First, we eat and drink at this potluck and BBQ dinner. BONC will provide a very brief update (less than 20 minutes) on recent activities and new initiatives. Share your ideas with BONC members and directors. When it gets dark enough to watch the movie outside, we will enjoy KLUNKERZ, an independent film that documents the early days of mountain biking in Marin County (buy this DVD). Please bring something to eat and / or drink, but more importantly, bring yourself and a friend. We'll have a grill going for food that needs it (and what food doesn't, really?).

Everyone is welcome. Donations to BONC are optional but gladly accepted. To learn more, join the BONC email list.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Hidden Falls Ride - 4/4

The Nevada County Land Trust is hosting a mountain bike ride on Saturday April 4th, at 9:00 am, at Hidden Falls Regional Park in Auburn, CA. This is a No Rider Left Behind ride, so all level of riders are welcome.

This ride benefits the Land Trust and is part of their "Treks Through Time Series" The ride is being led by BONC and FATRAC. There is a fee of $12.00 for Nevada County Land Trust Members and $17.00 for Non-members.

Where: Hidden Falls Regional Park, Auburn (directions)

Time: Meet 9:00 AM Registration/ Leave 9:30-until completion Estimate 2 + hours.


Registration fee $12.00 or $17.00.
Mountain Bike in ridable condition
Water: Bottle / Camel Back
Snack: Fruit / Sandwich / energy bar / etc

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Planning for New and Better Trails

On Saturday, trail enthusiasts convened to begin providing input on the Western Nevada Country Recreation Trails Master Plan. This county initiative seeks to identify existing and potential trail corridors so that the county can require new trails as development occurs and area non-profits can target grant funding for said projects . The plan should win approval this year, perhaps even by June, which is lightening fast by government standards.

It disappointed me to see so few mountain bikers at the crucial meeting, but I am grateful to those who did attend. We have an opportunity to advocate for multi-use trails and it is important we speak out in favor of bicycle access; there are those in Nevada County who would use plans like this to restrict such access. Sunday's participants were polled on such issues and other important questions about what kind of trails we want.

Please consider attending future sessions of this planning process if you care about what trails you can and can't ride in the future. This is important, thanks.

South Yuba Video

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Gala Bike Ride - March 7th

It's back! Please join BONC on the monthly BONC ride on Saturday, March 7th @ 10AM from Penn Gate at Empire Mine State Historic Park!

This will be a No-Rider-Left-Behind ride, which means that although faster riders are welcome, we will host the ride from the back of the pack. We'll explore some lesser known trails in the Mine and nearby Osborne Hill. When we finish, we'll gather at Penn Gate to enjoy some complimentary food prepared by BONC five star chefs*.

Please bring a bike, helmet, water and a mid ride snack. If you want to join BONC, we'll have memberships available. See you there!

*As rated by the BONC Elite Dining Guide

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Trails Public Workshop, 2/28

Nevada County has scheduled a public workshop for the Western Nevada County Recreational Trails Master Plan for February 28, 2009 at the Madelyn Helling Library Community Room from 1 to 3 p.m. According to the County:

"The purpose of this workshop is to inform interested individuals about the scope of the recreational trails plan, gain input on the draft plan goals, policies, and programs, and provide information regarding the mapping effort and how to get involved in establishing regional trail alignments in your neighborhood. The goal is to receive feedback from participants using automated survey software; participants will be able to see the results of survey questions during the workshop."

Trail users will find this a great opportunity to shape the future of local trails. Read more.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Good Times at February BONC Gala Ride

BONC kicked off the BONC Gala ride series with 14 riders and 2 volunteers at Empire Mine yesterday. The event featured great singletrack, beautiful weather and high quality food.

We broke into two groups: a casual paced intermediate set and a slower bunch. We explored lesser known trails in and near the park. We laughed a lot, but my favorite moment was when Galen questioned Chris' choice of gears as he did a track stand. My other personal favorite was watching 16 year old Christine Weir ride down a descent that her dad walked (sorry Bob, couldn't resist).

It was great to see riders join us from as far away as Elk Grove. One beginner rider claimed that this was his best ride yet. Special thanks to Fred Bergman and Shannon Wright who prepared up some delicious hot corn chowder, fruit and cookies. Pictures of the event.

I hope you can join us next month for this fun event. Meet at Penn Gate at 10AM on Saturday, March 7th. Rumor is that this get together will feature jambalaya :-)

Monday, February 02, 2009

Loma Rica Trail Bridge

Over the weekend, Zachi worked hard on the footings of the new bridge near the intersection of Brunswick and Idaho-Maryland on the Loma Rica Trail. I stopped by yesterday to snag a few pictures on my iPhone.

Zachi does some incredible bridge construction work. His work locally and in Forest City are works of art. We are lucky to have him working on our local trails.

If you have not yet ridden this trail, check it out. It is high quality. You can catch it off Loma Rica Drive near the ditch and descend all the way to the Nevada County Horseman's area. Thank you to Zachi, Mike, Jon, Bill and all the other volunteers who have made this Nevada County Land Trust project happen.


Friday, January 30, 2009

BONC Monthly Ride - 2/7, 10AM - Empire Mine

You are welcome to join the inaugural monthly BONC ride on Saturday, February 7th @ 10AM from Penn Gate at Empire Mine State Historic Park!

This will be a No-Rider-Left-Behind ride, which means that although faster riders are welcome, I will host the ride from the back of the pack. We'll explore some lesser known trails in the Mine and nearby Osborne Hill. When we finish, we'll gather at Penn Gate to enjoy some complementary food prepared by BONC chefs Fred Bergman and Shannon Wright.

Please bring a bike, helmet, water and a mid ride snack. If you want to join BONC, we'll have memberships cards available. See you there!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

UHS Mountain Bike Mayhem

Yesterday's Ned Overendapalooza at Union Hill School was just sah-weet. We had who-knows-how-many kids queued up to ride skinnies, teeter totters and obstacles for hours, a BONC bike booth with mechanics at the ready, free cookies and multiple rides with the legend Ned.

To finish things off, Ned gave an inspiring speech about racing, training and trail advocacy which was followed by a showing of the Collective film "Seasons". I am guessing there were some 100 people there through the event, which raised money for the kids' teams.

Thank you to all the volunteers and organizations that made this day happen, including the Bicycle Recycling project, BONC, Tour of Nevada City, Specialized, the school teams and others. Ned noted several times that we have an incredible community of riders up here, in addition to amazing trails. He is dead-on right and it is wonderful to see events like this that further strengthen what we have.

Pictures of the event. And BTW, Ned signed up as a member of BONC yesterday :-)

Friday, January 16, 2009

Ned Overend This Weekend

BONC hopes you can join us at Union Hill School this weekend as we hang out with Ned Overend (our close personal friend) and junior mountain bikers. We'll be providing riding and bike maintenance tips to students, eating too many BONC baked snacks and having a good time. All in perfect sunny weather in January.

BONC will also debut the internationally acclaimed new BONC membership card and banner at our booth at 3PM. You can renew your membership then or pick up your card if you've already renewed. So join us!


Union Hill School MTB Day with Ned Overend
Saturday, January 17, 2009.

Learn new riding skills and review the basics with Mountain Bike Legend Ned Overend.

WHO: Open to all middle school youth
Ride the trails of Empire Mine park in Grass Valley, CA, discussing bike-handling skills during the ride. Meet at Union Hill Middle
School main parking lot, 11638 Colfax Hwy, Grass Valley, CA .

WHO: Open to all middle school youth.
Bring your lunch or purchase a lunch for $5 at Union Hill School.

WHO: Open to all middle school youth.
Skills will be taught by MTB legend Ned Overend, former
Specialized Pro Racer, and Chuck Ross, current California Expert MTB Champion with help from the USCF Cat 1 (expert) riders from the Sierra Express/Sho-Air Racing Team.

WHO: Open to the general public.
Ned Overend will speak about training and racing, followed by the MTB movie "Seasons," an extreme mountain bike film by The Collective. Both will take place in the Union Hill School Gym as a fundraiser for the Union Hill Mountain Bike Club.

COST: The ride and clinics are free. $5 gets you in the door to hear Ned speak and see the film. All proceeds go to the Union Hill Mountain Bike Club.