Trail Mix: BLM releases plan to reopen Clear Creek

The Fresno BeeApril 3, 2013 

The Clear Creek Management Area would reopen to limited motorized use under the terms of a Proposed Resource Management Plan and Final Environmental Impact Statement released Friday by the Bureau of Land Management.

The 63,000-acre recreation area straddling southern San Benito and western Fresno counties, once popular with off-highway vehicle enthusiasts, has been closed since May 2008 due to health risks from naturally occurring asbestos called serpentine soils.

Under terms of the proposal, all driving in the Serpentine Area of Critical Concern would occur on a 32-mile scenic loop that provides access for nonmotorized recreation. Vehicle touring would be limited to five days per year and pedestrian access 12 days per year. No OHV use would be permitted.

The proposed RMP/Final EIS has a 30-day protest window through May 6. All protests must be addressed during this time.

To read the documents, go to


Spring Fling on the Kings

When: Sunday

Where: Lapp River House (26210 Elwood Road, Sanger)

Spend the afternoon relaxing at a beautiful location on the Kings River, or go for a hike or a 50-mile bike ride first. Whatever floats your boat.

Morning activities include a 10 a.m. guided hike on the North Riverside Trail ($25 per person and includes afternoon events and lunch) and supported 20- and 50-mile bike rides ($70 and includes afternoon events, lunch, T-shirt and goodie bag). Or opt to just lounge around and eat and drink while supporting the Kings River Conservancy ($50 for all-day tickets or $25 for afternoon/$30 evening).

Register online through Friday at or sign up on the day of the event.

News & notes

-- If you missed the first chance to hike around Ball Ranch with naturalists Clary Creager and Mike Mirigian, don't miss Sunday's second offering. Meet at 7:30 a.m. at Ball Ranch, located on the west side of Friant Road past Willow Avenue and Cemex. There is a $6 per car entrance fee. Register at

-- It's a big hiking weekend on the Sierra Foothill Conservancy preserves. There's a Saturday "power hike" on Tivy Mountain near Pine Flat Lake, followed by two hikes Sunday (power and non-power) to the McKenzie Preserve table tops. There's a $5 charge per outing, and space is limited. Register at

-- Sycamore Island Park is hosting a fishing derby for bass and trout April 13. More than 3,500 pounds of rainbow trout, including a few trophies, will be planted for the event. There is no charge for the derby, but participants must pay normal day use fees. Details at

-- Climbers and hikers must keep at least a quarter-mile away from Chimney Rock in the Giant Sequoia National Monument, a nesting site for peregrine falcons. The closure is in effect until Aug. 15 or when nesting concludes.

-- In case you missed it, China Peak closed Sunday due to lack of snow and will stay closed unless there's a significant storm. The Huntington Lake resort had planned to close April 21.

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