April 2016 Meeting Minutes

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

…from Arroyo Seco to Eaton Canyon

Tuesday 2016 April 12 (Yuri Gagarin Day), 7:00 PM meeting at Altadena Community Center (730 E Altadena Dr.)

DRAFT Minutes

  1. Attendees: Dennis Merkel, USFS, Rob Staehle, Olga Ruano (LA County), Mariettan Kruells, Steve Messer, Lori Paul, Kevin Singleton

2. Desired adjournment time for this meeting? 8:00 pm.

3. Decision on meeting Secretary & Recorder of Action Items. Steve Messer will take minutes.

4. Review Minutes and Action Items from March meeting. March minutes were approved with a correction to the date posted.

5. County / City / U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered later on agenda.

County will be hosting a “mutli-use trails day” on June 4th at Pathfinder Park in Rowland Heights.  Dennis Merkel announced California Trails Day this Saturday will work on Slide Mountain trail in the Santa Clara Mojave district. Agents of Discovery app has been released by the Forest Service at Vogel Flat with a theme of Pollinators in the Environment, an educational game/app that is already in use at Chilao and Grassy Hollow visitor center. The Forest Service will eventually have 75 sites around the U.S. included in the App.

6. Any serious new trail conditions or problems requiring immediate attention (firsthand reports strongly preferred; photos much appreciated)?

Steve, Mitch and Mike McGuire cut a downed oak tree from El Prieto trail.  Ken Burton trail will be opened to the public at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on May 1st as a part of the MWBA Pancake Breakfast.  CORBA and MWBA have been restoring the trail for the past six months, and expect to complete work on April 17th.

On March 22, Mitch saw the ACT and reported that ACT is getting overgrown, especially one section east of the water tank. No county work recently. A significant landslide above Skyview drive did not block the trail at that time.  Hans Ghekere worked on the section near the private gate above Eaton Canyon at the east end but the undermined drain I have already reported is getting worse. Also, there is a long reach of in-sloped trail near Eaton Canyon where the collected flow is eating across the whole tread.

7. Current Tasks

i. Tentative plan for expanded child care facility along ACT, 3636 Skylane Drive.

Lori Paul reports that there is nothing new to report. The validity of current permits are being verified

ii. Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments.

Thank you Pasadena for west end of ACT into Hahamongna! One segment of the trail has been restored at the end of Altadena Drive by the City of Pasadena. The trail has been repaired, graded and compacted, but have not included any drainage along the segment of trail. Fence was replaced and extended. We are wondering why the boulders were removed. Olga will check with the trail maintenance crew to see if there is anything scheduled for the ACT.  No reports on the removal of the Lincoln Ave water company pipes from the Chaney Trail connector.

iii. Millard Canyon:  Graffiti removal; restore natural rocks after tagging painted out by County crew?

We now have a campground host at Millard, he is living in a tent. Working to remove the old trailer from the site. Problem is that we need to get equipment to remove the trailer from the site to where it can be picked up by a metal recycler. Law enforcement considers it Lonnie’s responsibility (former camp host). On the 19th the FS dozer operator will move it to the parking lot to be dismantled. New Host is Keith Ping. Volunteers have attempted to remove the graffiti from the area, but it was difficult to remove, so they painted over some of it.

iv. Any update re: New fence erected along ~200-foot segment of ACT above Windfall Ave (E. of Rubio Gap and Stonehill). Fence obstructs drainage culverts and the view to south from the trail. Policy changes to prevent future fence / wall obstructions? Olga Ruano / LA County, Dennis Merkel / USFS.

Olga reported that aerial imagery shows that the fence is encroaching on the trail easement. They are planning to send a letter to the property owner stating that he needs to remove the fence from the trail easement. Nobody has contacted the property owner directly; this group feels personal contact would be a good first step. Fence appears to be on two different parcels, both of whom need to be contacted to determine why they put up the fence, and what can be done to ease their concerns. County and Forest Service need to coordinate efforts. First step is to send them a friendly, non-demanding letter requesting them to remove the fence from the easement. Fence was erected on top of a small retaining wall structure that may have been part of the trail. No fencing permits are required for a fence 6’ or less that is not a retaining wall.

v. DPW Devil’s Gate Reservoir (Hahamongna Watershed Park) / ACT Trailhead / Recreation impacts? Arroyo Seco Foundation Litigation? JPL / NASA  Security Gates Project? Marietta Kruells or Lori Paul

Altadena Heritage newsletter is going to include a story discussing the creation of a four-way trail junction site in Hahamongna.

vi. La Vina litigation resolved: update & resumption of trail planning. Marietta Kruells, Olga Ruano / LA County

No new reports.

vii. Rubio Cyn Gateway trail planning status / discussion with AFC. Olga Ruano / LA County

A geotechnical report has been done for a proposed trail alignment through the AFC property, and the County is waiting for the AFC to get back to them on the proposed easement. Samir Etman sold the property with a condition that an easement for the ACT would eventually be granted. There are current rumors of a gate being considered at the Mt. Lowe Railway right of way trail, access to Rubio Canyon. The County needs to be proactive in preventing a gate from being installed at this location.

viii. Update on locked Pinecrest Gate.

New sign on the back side of the Pinecrest Gate that says “If locked inside call county Sherriff.”

Existing county ordinances prohibit smoking, trash, alcohol, shooting, hunting, etc from County parks, which include trails. Trails that access the Forest should not be closed. County asserts that trails close at Sunset, yet people have been using the trails after dark for decades. Enforcement of existing ordinances is needed, not a gate keeping honest trail users out.

Olga has produced a map showing the gate is on County DPW property. Olga will check with DPW to see if they have any claim over the gate. County Parks needs to look into an MOU with the DPW.

8. Other Old Business

Nothing new to report.

9. Other New Business

10. Review of Task List for next meeting.

  • Olga to check on trail maintenance crew schedule to see if ACT is on the schedule.
  • Dennis will check with Graham about the Lincoln Ave Water Company permit requirement to remove the pipe from the Chaney Trail/Sunset Ridge connector portion of the ACT.
  • Rob will look for a copy of the sale agreement between Sameer Etman and AFC, including conditions of the sale requiring a trail easement be granted.
  • Olga to check with DPW about the Pinecrest gate and the road right-of-way.

11. Upcoming Events: The next ACTRWG meeting falls on Tuesday, 2016 May 10 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center).

15. Adjourned at 8:16 pm.

April 2016 Meeting Agenda

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

…from Arroyo Seco to Eaton Canyon

Tuesday 2016 April 12 (Yuri Gagarin Day)  v DRAFT Agenda

7:00 PM meeting at Altadena Community Center (730 E Altadena Dr.)

  1. Introductions for new attendees.
  2. Desired adjournment time for this meeting
  3. Decision on meeting Secretary & Recorder of Action Items.
  4. Review Minutes and Action Items from March meeting (thank you Steve Messer!).
  5. County / City / U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered later on agenda. Sussy Nemer / Field Deputy for LA County Supervisor Antonovich; Ken Slu / Senior Manager LA County Chief Executive Office; Olga Ruano / Park Planner, Special Trails Projects, County Parks & Recreation; Pasadena / TBD; Dennis Merkel / USFS Recreation Staff Officer
  6. Any serious new trail conditions or problems requiring immediate attention (firsthand reports strongly preferred; photos much appreciated)?
  7. Current Tasks
    1. Tentative plan for expanded child care facility along ACT, 3636 Skylane Drive.  Lori Paul
    2. Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments.  Thank you Pasadena for west end of ACT into Hahamongna! Robert Staehle / ACTRWG, Olga Ruano / LA County
    3. Millard Canyon:  Graffiti removal; restore natural rocks after tagging painted out by County crew? Status of new campground caretaker? John Grancich, Dennis Merkel.
    4. Any update re: New fence erected along ~200-foot segment of ACT above Windfall Ave (E. of Rubio Gap and Stonehill). Fence blocks obstructs drainage culverts and the view to south from the trail. Policy changes to prevent future fence / wall obstructions? Olga Ruano / LA County, Dennis Merkel / USFS
    5. DPW Devil’s Gate Reservoir (Hahamongna Watershed Park) / ACT Trailhead / Recreation impacts? Arroyo Seco Foundation Litigation? JPL / NASA  Security Gates Project? Marietta Kruells or Lori Paul
    6. La Vina litigation resolved: update & resumption of trail planning. Marietta Kruells, Olga Ruano / LA County
    7. Rubio Cyn Gateway trail planning status / discussion with AFC. Olga Ruano / LA County
    8. Update on locked Pinecrest Gate. Mitch Marich or Paul A
  8. Other Old Business
  9. Other New Business
  10. Review of Task List for next meeting
  11. Upcoming Events: The next ACTRWG meeting falls on Tuesday, 2016 May 10 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center)
  12. Adjourn

2016-03-08 – March 2016 Meeting Minutes

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee
…from Arroyo Seco to Eaton Canyon
Tuesday, March 8,  2016
DRAFT Minutes

7:00 PM meeting at Altadena Community Center

(730 E Altadena Dr.)

0. Introductions for new attendees. Steve Messer, Mitch Marich, Robert Staehle, Lori Paul, Bob Blount, USFS District Ranger, Dennis Merkel USFS Recreation Officer, Marietta Kruells, John Grancich, Olga Ruano, Vicki Thompson, ? Thompson, Tim Callahan, Kevin Singleton, Linda Burle, Altadena Heritage. Hans Ghekiere, Mark Goldschmidt.

1. Desired adjournment time for this meeting?, 8:20 pm target for adjournment.

2. Decision on meeting Secretary & Recorder of Action Items. Steve Messer will serve as secretary.

3. Review Minutes and Action Items from January meeting (the February meeting was cancelled). Correction: no minutes for December to review. Correction: Kevin brought up camera on AFC; Lori seconded adjournment motion. With corrections, minutes were approved unanimously.

4. County / City / U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered later on agenda. Sussy Nemer / Field Deputy for LA County Supervisor Antonovich; Ken Slu / Senior Manager LA County Chief Executive Office; Olga Ruano / Park Planner, Special Trails Projects, County Parks & Recreation; Pasadena / TBD; Dennis Merkel / USFS Recreation Staff Officer; Bob Blount / USFS District Ranger.

Bob Blount, USFS District Ranger. Has 7 Years on Angeles National Forest as Santa Clara Mojave District ranger. The Angeles is being reorganized from three ranger districts into one district and the national monument. He will be district ranger for everything outside the monument. Santa Clara Mojave has a lot of infrastructure, and is a blue collar area of the forest. Right now he is covering two of the three districts. He is fact-finding at this and other meetings. One challenge is “which promise am I going to break today.” Hopeful that more money will come to the Forest because of the monument. Comes from the east coast where there is nothing like this. Naval Academy, then a Masters at Duke. In real estate business, was pillaging land is now doing penance. Will remain for at least four years until the forest is transitioned to new structure. Looks forward to being of service to the group. Reorganization won’t happen until after fire season. There are already more uniformed staff expected. No reduction or increase in recreation sites due to monument. The additional funds from the monument may lead to additional services and facilities. No change in fee structure for use of facilities anticipated. Wants to reach out to establish a better relationship with Sherrif’s department. More gis work needs to be done, and field staff will be trained in GIS use. Requested two interns from Student Conservation Association to survey trails.

Rob Staehle gave a history of the Altadena Crest Trail. Liz rode it end to end in 1974. The length is about 13 miles from Eaton Canyon to Arroyo Seco on the west. Aerial photos from 1964 show a continuous trail. Significant set of storms in the 70s washed out some portions of the trail. It was considered a County trail at that time, but some portions were on National Forest Land, some on County Land. This group was established after La Vina development was put in. Purchased land from the La Vina Sanitorium, which closed in the early 70s. Private developer originally included Trails in marketing materials. Some trails were closed during construction, but were never reopened. There was a description of public trails in the original application. Some trails were declared not public. HOA took ownership of the trails and open space, and closed access to the public. The Chief Executive Office of the County held meetings and asked Altadena Residents to form a group to advise the County on how to reconnect the gap in the trail. Anne Dove with NPS facilitated meeting.

There are now three gaps. La Vina development gap. Skylane Gap between west of Cobb Estate and Alzada road and Chaney Trail, and the Rubio Canyon gap. Group was established in 2003. Trail crosses private land with easements, some private land without easements, County and Forest Service and Conservancy lands. Trail was about 13 miles when it existed uninterrupted. This group’s goal is to reconnect the trail, and to monitor and improve trails throughout the Altadena Area.

5. Any serious new trail conditions or problems requiring immediate attention (firsthand reports strongly preferred; photos much appreciated)? Tim reported that the Sunset Ridge trail is being graded. Graffiti is becoming a bigger problem. Dumping is becoming a problem. There was a bedhead thrown off the road along Chaney Trail. Lincoln Ave Water Company is working on Sunset Ridge trail, and have contracted with Bellfree Contractors to repair failed retaining walls that they installed as a part of the pipe replacement project. The cutoff valve is being moved further upstream. Parking at the top of Chaney Trail has been striped so there are fewer spaces, but better defined. Angled parking allows more vehicles.
Mitch and Steve worked on removing downed trees from Dawn Mine Trail. Restoration legacy crew is restoring the Dawn Mine trail and the Millard Falls trail.

Abandoned pipes still a problem on Chaney Trail/ACT connector. Pipes must be removed in accordance with their permits. Gram Breakwell needs to be contacted.

6. Current Tasks

A. Tentative plan for expanded child care facility along ACT, 3636 Skylane Drive. Lori Paul. Historically known as Penny’s Barn, was on two sides of ACT and convenient to horse people to board horses and access the trail. Sold a few years ago to start a day care center. No info on whether day care is authorized. they are looking for a conditional use permit to tear down the barns and put in a 40 student day care/pre-k facility. We are losing equestrian zoned homes, and changing the character of the neighborhood. If it goes forward, there will probably be a fence erected.

B. Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments before predicted major El Nino rains. Robert Staehle / ACTRWG, Olga Ruano / LA County. Mitch was there on February 19 and didn’t see any additional work between Zane Gray and Eaton Canyon. There is one bad drain on the way up, where the culvert is undermined by water. Past the slot canyon there hasn’t been any additional work done on the trail. Some Graffiti on the check dam. Slot canyon has been filled in with dirt over the rocky, rough canyon floor. Some drainages have been repaired since the last report. Above Glen Allen on one of the high ridges there are several switchbacks that had drains under the tread, that have long since failed. The top switchback has been undermined and the drain has failed, which creates erosion on the trail below it after the switchbacks.

C. Emergency acquisition of bear-proof food boxes for 5 sites in Millard Cyn Campground. Lori Paul, John Grancich, Dennis Merkel. Recent “bear encounters” due to unsecure food puts campers, trail users, and bears at risk. Update: Scout installation of first bear locker; plans for more individual site lockers? Bear proof food box has been installed at Millard. Kevin Hunt reported that the boy scouts are considering an eagle scout project to install an additional bear-proof locker. Millard Campground has been adopted by South Pasadena Boy Scouts. Problems continue with visitors eating food in campgrounds, leaving trash, and bears coming into the neighborhoods and getting into trash. Having bear-proof boxes would help deter bears from habituating to campgrounds and neighborhoods. Keith Payne, local person may become camp host.

D. Any update re: New fence erected along ~200-foot segment of ACT above Windfall Ave (E. of Rubio Gap and Stonehill). Fence blocks or obstructs drainage culverts and the view to south from the trail. Olga Ruano / LA County, Dennis Merkel / USFS. Dennis talked to Cliff Johnson, Forest Service Surveyor, who said that the fence is on Private Property. Would take an in-depth search, which costs money and takes time to verify. Zoning laws don’t prohibit privacy curtain, or fences over 6 feet. Are there any ordinances to prevent neighbors from doing the same? If there is a code issue, County needs to enforce it. If it is OK, then the next step would be a political solution to prevent future fences that block viewsheds, drainage, and impact the trail experience. Question was raised, are permits required for such fences? Olga would need to issue a notice of violation of codes as a written notice, with an opportunity to correct the problem.

E. DPW Devil’s Gate Reservoir (Hahamongna Watershed Park) / ACT Trailhead / Recreation impacts? Arroyo Seco Foundation Litigation? JPL / NASA Security Gates Project? Marietta Kruells or Lori Paul. Lawsuit is continuing. Points of concern are the water diversion proposal to store water. Grant for $28m applied for to put a pipe from Hahamongna to Pasadena across Woodbery to Raymond Basin to benefit Pasadena instead of Altadena. Grant was obtained with an application that has inaccuracies and inappropriate language. Integrated Regional Water Company? CEQA requires cumulative impacts, so this should be considered under Hahamongna Watershed Park’s environmental study as a cumulative impact. Pasadena and County are proposing a pumpback system to benefit Monk Hill. There’s a chance if the pump is put in, it will not be used consistently. Will impact recreation and habitat. One of Pasadena’s projects is to improve trail from Altadena Drive to Hahamongna. Work has begun on rehabbing the trail through this section.

JPL has a pending proposal to put in a new security gate. First comment period ended, Lori sent in comments and copied Olga on the project.

F. La Vina litigation resolved: update & resumption of trail planning. Marietta Kruells, Olga Ruano / LA County. Bob Musselmen wrote a report. As of yesterday the HOA finished an audit of the trail alignments. SMMC and County have developed a legal description of the trail easement. Was delivered to HOA for approval last week. HOA reps walked the alignments on Monday, and conculded that the trail alignments are consistent with those proposed and documented by the surveryors. HOA reps will recomment approval on March 21 at HOA meeting. Then County will submit the easement to the County for recording. By separate court filing the transfer of property along the trail from HOA to SMMC will go into affect without any futher involvement of the HOA. Could happen as early as May. Construction of trail could begin as soon as this summer. HOA will then have no responsibility for trail or land. There are overlays for the AFC who mostly oppose trails.

Report from La Vina HOA March 7, 2016 (via Bob Musselman):

  • The SMMC and County have developed a legal description of meets and bounds describing the trail easements to the County, and subsequent property conveyance from the La Vina HOA to SMMC.
  • The legal description and easement document was delivered by the County to the La Vina HOA for approval last week.
    HOA reps, including myself, walked trail alignments today per the legal descriptions, and they are consistent with the trails agreed by the HOA, County, and SMMC and documented by the surveyors.
  • HOA reps will recommend approval at the next HOA Board meeting on March 21.
  • If the Board signs the Agreement, then the County will submit the approved easement document to the Court for recording. This action will satisfy all aspects of the July 2008 court judgment regarding the County.
  • By separate Court filing the property transfer of property along the trails and outside the trails from the HOA to the SMMC will go into effect without further approvals required by the HOA. The transfer of property will satisfy all aspects of the agreement between the HOA and Kruells dated February 2012. This may occur as early as the end of May, 2016.
  • The schedule for actual trail building will be up to the SMMC, but could certainly start this summer providing they have funding and availability of trail building crews.
  • When the trails are actually constructed, all work will take place on what will then be SMMC property, and the HOA will have no authority or responsibility with regard to the construction, operation, or regulation of the trails.

G. Rubio Cyn Gateway trail planning status / discussion with AFC. Olga Ruano / LA County. There are two appraisals being worked on. County is reviewing trail easement legal descriptions, and has contracted DPW to start legal descriptions on those two parcels. They are supposed to received three legal descriptions total. Two sections are on private property, a third on Rubio Water Company property. Appraisal needs to happen first before county can determine next steps. Progress has been made with AFC/John Howell. Geotechnical report of trail easement on AFC property was presented to John Howell. Geotechnical report says a trail can be constructed. One more item is the maintenance responsibility for trail easement. Parks and Rec will write an MOU to outline trail maintenance conditions, and how the easement from AFC will be recorded.

H. Update on locked Pinecrest Gate. Mitch Marich or Paul Ayers. Mitch reports no changes to the gate. Asked OLGA to determine the owner of the parcel on which the gate is located. It appears the gate is on County land, Assessors ID 5857-013-037 (Art’s property – Gate is adjacent).

7. Other Old Business. Nothing reported.

8. Other New Business. Restoration work is ongoing at Dawn Mine trail. 591 Devonwood is for sale, and has a County trail easement, and has a county motion to landscape with native plants, but that requirement never never put on the lien.

9. Review of Task List for next meeting.

Steve to add USFS volunteer meeting to web site

Olga will check with zoning enforcement to check fence along trail item 6D.

Mitch to send OLGA photos and locations of trail problems.

Contact Graeme Breakwell about LAWC pipes on chaney trail connector. John Grancich will provide location of other pipes that need to be replaced.

Determine if there is an Assessors ID number for the parcel on which pinecrest gate. Is the property on County or City property.

10. Upcoming Events: The next ACTRWG meeting falls on Tuesday, 2016 April 12 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center).

11. Adjourned at 8:55 pm.

March 8, 2016 Agenda (Draft)

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

…from Arroyo Seco to Eaton Canyon

Tuesday 2016 March 8

DRAFT Agenda

7:00 PM meeting at Altadena Community Center (730 E Altadena Dr.)

0. Introductions for new attendees.

1. Desired adjournment time for this meeting?

2. Decision on meeting Secretary & Recorder of Action Items.

3. Review Minutes and Action Items from January meeting (the February meeting was cancelled).

4. County / City / U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered later on agenda. Sussy Nemer / Field Deputy for LA County Supervisor Antonovich; Ken Slu / Senior Manager LA County Chief Executive Office; Olga Ruano / Park Planner, Special Trails Projects, County Parks & Recreation; Pasadena / TBD;  Dennis Merkel / USFS Recreation Staff Officer; Bob Blount / USFS District Ranger.

5. Any serious new trail conditions or problems requiring immediate attention (firsthand reports strongly preferred; photos much appreciated)?

6. Current Tasks

A. Tentative plan for expanded child care facility along ACT, 3636 Skylane Drive. Lori Paul

B. Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments before predicted major El Nino rains. Robert Staehle / ACTRWG, Olga Ruano / LA County

C. Emergency acquisition of bear-proof food boxes for 5 sites in Millard Cyn Campground. Lori Paul, John Grancich, Dennis Merkel. Recent “bear encounters” due to unsecure food puts campers, trail users, and bears at risk. Update: Scout installation of first bear locker; plans for more individual site lockers?

D. Any update re: New fence erected along ~200-foot segment of ACT above Windfall Ave (E. of Rubio Gap and Stonehill). Fence blocks obstructs drainage culverts and the view to south from the trail. Olga Ruano / LA County, Dennis Merkel / USFS

E. DPW Devil’s Gate Reservoir (Hahamongna Watershed Park) / ACT Trailhead / Recreation impacts? Arroyo Seco Foundation Litigation? JPL / NASA Security Gates Project? Marietta Kruells or Lori Paul

F. La Vina litigation resolved: update & resumption of trail planning. Marietta Kruells, Olga Ruano / LA County

G. Rubio Cyn Gateway trail planning status / discussion with AFC. Olga Ruano / LA County

H. Update on locked Pinecrest Gate. Mitch Marich or Paul Ayers

7. Other Old Business

8. Other New Business

9. Review of Task List for next meeting

10. Upcoming Events: The next ACTRWG meeting falls on Tuesday,  2016 April 12 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center).

11. Adjourn

January 2016 Meeting Agenda

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

 

…from Arroyo Seco to Eaton Canyon

Tuesday January 12, 2016, 7:00 PM 

Altadena Community Center (730 E Altadena Dr.)

DRAFT Agenda

 

0.  Introductions for new attendees. Meetings are open to the public.

1.   Desired adjournment time for this meeting?

2.   Decision on meeting Secretary & Recorder of Action Items. Thank you Steve Messer for both chairing and taking minutes at November meeting!

3.     Review Minutes and Action Items from last meeting.

4.     County / City / U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered later on agenda. Sussy Nemer / Field Deputy for LA County Supervisor Antonovich; Ken Slu / Senior Manager LA County Chief Executive Office; Olga Ruano / Park Planner, Special Trails Projects, County Parks & Recreation; Pasadena / TBD; Dennis Merkel / USFS Recreation Staff Officer

5.      Any serious new trail conditions or problems requiring immediate attention (firsthand reports strongly preferred; photos much appreciated)?

6.     Current Tasks

A. Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments before predicted major El Nino winter. Robert Staehle/ACTRWG, Olga Ruano/LA County

B. Emergency acquisition of bear-proof food boxes for 5 sites in Millard Cyn Campground.  Lori Paul, John Grancich, Dennis Merkel.  Recent “bear encounters” due to unsecure food puts campers, trail users, and bears at risk. Update: Scout installation of first bear locker; plans for individual site lockers?

C. Fence illegally erected along ~200-foot segment of ACT above Windfall Ave (E of Rubio Gap and Stonehill? Fence blocks obstructs drainage culverts and the view to south from the trail. Olga Ruano /LA County, Dennis Merkel/USFS

D. DPW Devil’s Gate Reservoir (Hahamamongna Watershed Park) / ACT Trailhead / Recreation impacts? Arroyo Seco Foundation LItigation? Marietta Kruells or Lori Paul
E. Status of proposed 18 New Homes (so-called “La Vina II”) on school site, though developer has failed to build the required public trail (restoration of the ACT). Marietta Kruells or Lori Paul  La Vina litigation resolved: update & resumption of trail planning. See “C” above. Olga Ruano/LA County

F. Rubio Cyn Gateway trail planning status. Olga Ruano /LA County
Update on locked Pinecrest Gate. (Mitch Marich or Paul Ayers)

7.     Other Old Business

8.     Other New Business

9.     Review of Task List for next meeting

10.  Upcoming Events:  The next ACTRWG meeting falls on Tuesday, 2016 January 12 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center).

11.  Adjourn

November 2015 Meeting Minutes

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

7:00 P.M. at Altadena Community Center (730 E. Altadena Drive)

0. Attendees: Robert Staehle, Steve Messer (CORBA), Lori Paul, Mitch Marich (Mount Wilson Bicycling Association), Marietta Kruells.

1. Desired adjournment time for this meeting?  8:00 p.m.

2. Decision on meeting Secretary & Recorder of Action Items.  Steve Messer agreed to act as Secretary.

3. Review Minutes and Action Items from last meeting.  Minutes were unanimously approved.

4. County / City / U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered later on agenda: No officials were present, and no reports were available.

5. Any serious new trail conditions or problems requiring immediate attention:   CORBA and MWBA have begun restoration work on Ken Burton the previous weekend. Approximately 1/2 mile has been cleared in two days of work. Trail is grown over, but mostly intact tread.

Lincoln Avenue Water Company is working on replacing their pipes along the Sunset Ridge trail, but no indications of removal of the decommissioned pipe along the ACT from the reservoir down to Chaney Trail. They are required by their permit to remove decommissioned pipe. Motion was made to write a letter to the USFS to request that they enforce the conditions of the LAWC permit, and remove pipe from the Chaney Trail connector, between South Coulter reservoir and Chaney Trail road. Motion passed unanimously.

Murietta has been to a Lincoln Ave water company meeting. There are new wells being drilled at Raymond Basin, apparently without appropriate water rights. For historical reference, the road now called Chaney Trail was once called Sunset Ridge Road, and the connector trail was also called Sunset Ridge Trail. It was named after Doctor Chaney who ran a TB sanitarium.

AFC missed an opportunity to acquire a tax-default property in Canyon Crest. It was purchased by a private citizen for pennies on the dollar, and they now want to remove oaks to build.

6. Current Tasks

A. Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments before predicted major El Nino winter: Mitch reported that approximately 1/2 mile of the east end of the ACT was graded, including some work to remove berms left by machine-grading. Culverts were not fixed.

B. Emergency acquisition of bear-proof food boxes for 5 sites in Millard Cyn Campground.  A single bear-proof box has been installed at Millard campground, paid for by donations from local residents. Additional boxes are planned for purchase and will be installed as funds allow.

C. Fence erected along ~200-foot segment of ACT above Windfall Ave (E of Rubio Gap and Stonehill? No updates were available.

D. DPW Devil’s Gate Reservoir (Hahamamongna Watershed Park) / ACT Trailhead / Recreation impacts?  No new information.

E. Status of proposed 18 New Homes (so-called “La Vina II”) on school site, though developer has failed to build the required public trail:   No new reports. Debate about whether this is relevant to trails, even though we all agree that it should not go forward.

F. La Vina litigation resolved: update & resumption of trail planning.  Marietta is disillusioned about whether the promised trail will be completed.

G. Rubio Cyn Gateway trail planning status / discussion with AFC: A proposedtrail alignment through the AFC property has been flagged and a geotechnical survey is underway to determine the feasibility and engineering requirements for a trail.

H. Update on locked Pinecrest Gate.  Mitch still checks on the gate, with no change in the status. Mitch continues to collect emails of those who are trapped. Gate is being closed earlier with the time change.

7. Other Old Business. Steve Messer has been given control of the AltadenaTrails.org domain name, and it now points to an Altadenatrails.org web site built on wordpress. A new email address has been created, altadenatrails@gmail.com which is set to forward to Steve and to Lori Paul/Rob Staehle. The web site is now live.

8. Other New Business. Steve Messer has been given a draft PDF copy of the revised Los Angeles County trails manual for review and comment.

9. Review of Task List for next meeting:  Marietta will email Graham Breakwell (special use permit officer for the USFS) to ask that the FS enforce the conditions of the Lincoln Ave Water Company, and have them remove the decommissioned pipe from South Coulter reservoir to Chaney trail road, and to find out if they are also required to restore the trail to its original condition.

Mitch will forward photos to Olga Ruano showing the work on ACT. Accuracy of ACT information on County Trails web site needs to be determined.

10. Upcoming Events: The next ACTRWG meeting falls on Tuesday, December 8, 2015 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center).

11. Adjourn at 7:55pm

October 2015 Minutes

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

7:00 P.M. at Altadena Community Center (730 E. Altadena Drive)

0. Attendees: John Grancich, Millard Canyon Resident, John Lynch, Robert Staehle, Steve Messer (CORBA), Dennsi Merkel (USFS), Mike Parkinson (Boy Scouts Troop 342), Mitch Marich (Mount Wilson Bicycling Association), Marietta Kruells.

1. Desired adjournment time for this meeting?  8:00 p.m.

2. Decision on meeting Secretary & Recorder of Action Items.  Steve Messer agreed to act as Secretary.

3. Review Minutes and Action Items from last meeting.  Minutes were unanimously accepted with a spelling correction to “Lisa Laveagna” from the City of Pasadena.

4. County / City / U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered later on agenda: Dennis Merkel stated that there is a new District Ranger in office, Bob Blount, and that his district now includes all of the Angeles National Forest that lies outside the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument. Millard Campground has a camp host expected to arrive and begin in November. The Millard Falls trail closure was lifted and the trail is now officially open.

5. Any serious new trail conditions or problems requiring immediate attention:  Steve Messer reported that he and Mitch had used chainsaws to clear two tress of Sunset Ridge Trail, several from the Gabrielino trail, and the Grizzly Flat fire road and trail. John Grancich reported that the Millard Falls trail is important to be open, because people using the trail is a deterrent to “objectionable types” using the closed trail. He feels the trail and nearby cabins are safer with more people using the trail. He would like to see the area enhanced and improved for campers and trail users. Kevin Hunt (USFS Recreation) has been monitoring the area. Seneca Smith has been doing a fire patrol in the area. There is a homeless gentleman, Jim Nyquist, who has an encampment on the east side of the hairpin on Canyon Crest, and is illegally lighting fires for cooking.

6. Current Tasks

A. Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments before predicted major El Nino winter:  Mitch reports that the County has done some maintenance, but mostly done unsustainably, leaving a berm and poor drainage on the trail. No repairs were done to drainage or culverts.

B. Emergency acquisition of bear-proof food boxes for 5 sites in Millard Cyn Campground. Lori Paul, John Grancich, Dennis Merkel. Recent “bear encounters” due to unsecure food puts campers, trail users, and bears at risk. Local Millard Canyon cabin owners have purchased a bear box to be installed at the campground. The FS has ordered a new sign instructing people to use the bear box. Mike Parkinson’s boy scout troop is interested in doing eagle scout projects to enhance the campground, perhaps including more bear boxes, interpretive signs, etc.  There is a trail sign-in box at the top of Lower Sunset Ridge trail that could possibly be moved to the campground.

C. Fence erected along ~200-foot segment of ACT above Windfall Ave (E of Rubio Gap and Stonehill? No updates were available

D. DPW Devil’s Gate Reservoir (Hahamamongna Watershed Park) / ACT Trailhead / Recreation impacts?  Marietta reported that the County did their emergency sediment removal from in front of the dam, but the “big dig” is still scheduled for 2016.

E. Status of proposed 18 New Homes (so-called “La Vina II”) on school site, though developer has failed to build the required public trail:   No new reports.

F. La Vina litigation resolved: update & resumption of trail planning.  Bob Musselman sent an email incorrectly asserting that only Marietta has the ability to move the trail projects forward. Marietta reported that it is still tied up in legal dealings between the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy and the County.

G. Rubio Cyn Gateway trail planning status / discussion with AFC: County reportedly had a meeting with the AFC, and County surveyors have been seen on the property.  Other than that, no new information.

H. Update on locked Pinecrest Gate.  No changes, people continue to get trapped and call 911 to have sherrifs let them out. Suggestion was made to invite the sherrif’s department to take a stand on the gate.

7. Other Old Business. Steve Messer has created a temporary web site for the group, available for preview at http://altadena.corbamtb.com. He will coordinate with Bev Huntsberger to transfer altadenatrails.org to the site.

8. Other New Business. Marietta showed the group the USFS/DOT Equestrian Trails Manual, wondering why the County was “reinventing the wheel” and spending so much on a trails manual when so many resources already exist.

9. Review of Task List for next meeting:  Steve will contact Bev Huntsberger about domain; John Grancich to draft a letter of thanks to Seneca Smith;

10. Upcoming Events: The next ACTRWG meeting falls on Tuesday, 2015 November 10 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center).

11. Adjourn at 8:10pm

October 2015 Agenda

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

7:00 P.M. at Altadena Community Center (730 E. Altadena Drive)

0. Introductions for new attendees.

1. Desired adjournment time for this meeting?

2. Decision on meeting Secretary & Recorder of Action Items.

3. Review Minutes and Action Items from last meeting.

4. County / City / U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered later on agenda. Sussy Nemer / Field Deputy for LA County Supervisor Antonovich; Ken Slu / Senior Manager LA County Chief Executive Office; Olga Ruano or Catherine Ricci / Park Planner, Special Trails Projects, County Parks & Recreation; Pasadena / TBD; Dennis Merkel / USFS Recreation Staff Officer

5. Any serious new trail conditions or problems requiring immediate attention (firsthand reports strongly preferred; photos much appreciated)?

6. Current Tasks

A. Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments before predicted major El Nino winter. Robert Staehle/ACTRWG, Olga Ruano or Catherine Ricci/LA County

B. Emergency acquisition of bear-proof food boxes for 5 sites in Millard Cyn Campground. Lori Paul, John Grancich, Dennis Merkel. Recent “bear encounters” due to unsecure food puts campers, trail users, and bears at risk. Update: Scout installation of first bear locker; plans for individual site lockers?

C. Any update re: New fence erected along ~200-foot segment of ACT above Windfall Ave (E of Rubio Gap and Stonehill? Fence blocks obstructs drainage culverts and the view to south from the trail. Olga Ruano or Catherine Ricci/LA County, Dennis Merkel/USFS

D. DPW Devil’s Gate Reservoir (Hahamamongna Watershed Park) / ACT Trailhead / Recreation impacts?  Arroyo Seco Foundation LItigation? Marietta Kruells or Lori Paul

E. Status of proposed 18 New Homes (so-called “La Vina II”) on school site, though developer has failed to build the required public trail (restoration of the ACT). Marietta Kruells or Lori Paul

F. La Vina litigation resolved: update & resumption of trail planning. See “C” above. Olga Ruano or Catherine Ricci

G. Rubio Cyn Gateway trail planning status / discussion with AFC. Olga Ruano or Catherine Ricci/LA County

H. Update on locked Pinecrest Gate. Mitch Marich or Paul Ayers

7. Other Old Business

8. Other New Business

9. Review of Task List for next meeting

10. Upcoming Events: The next ACTRWG meeting falls on Tuesday, 2015 November 10 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center).

11. Adjourn

September 2015 Meeting Minutes

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

Tuesday, September 8, 2015 Meeting Minutes

7:00 p.m. at Altadena Community Center (720 E. Altadena Drive)

0. Attendees: Mirch Marich, Olga Ruano (LA County), Paul Ayers, Lori Paul, Rob Staehle, Steve Messer, Marietta Kruells

1. Desired adjournment time for the meeting?  8:15 p.m. 

2. Decision on Meeting Secretary and Recorder of Minutes.  Steve Messer volunteered to record the minutes

3. Review minutes and action items from the last meeting. Last month’s minutes were unanimously approved, with a correction to the spelling of “Larry Hensley” & a close parenthesis.

4. County/City/U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered on the agenda. County is busy with projects.  Mike Antonivich Ride will be at Cherry Canyon on Oct 18. Erosion on ACT downstream of Canyon Blvd, County maintenance crew is bringing in temporary sandbags, DG and stabilizer to be completed next week. County trails manual is being updated.

5. Any serious new trail conditions or problems that need reporting? Mitch sent a PDF of trail conditions, and will forward it to Olga. Steve has been doing chainsaw work on Gabrielino and other trails. Reports of trail conditions can go to trails@parks.lacounty.gov, or 877-601-4850 (DPR Call Center).

6. Current Tasks

A. Re-Grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments before predicted El Nino Winter. Group requested County prioritize preventive maintenance including drainage on trails in steeper terrain, especially with El Nino in the forecast. Can County use a contractor for critical preventive maintenance?

B. Emergency Acquisition of bear-proof boxes for five sites in Millard Canyon. Millard Campground is in desperate need of bear-proof food storage containers, also at Gould Mesa. Group will pass on this request to the FS.

C. Update on the new fence erected along the ACT above Windfall Ave (E. of Rubio Gap and Stonehill.): No new reports. Could a “public nuisance” suit be brought against property owner?

D. DWP Devil’s Gate Reservoir Arroyo Seco Foundation Litigation. Have not heard from Rosa Laveagna. County DPW is going to clean out in front of the dam. La Canada person also needs to be appointed.

E. Status of proposed 18 new homes in La Vina II on the school site. No new reports.

F. La Vina Litigation resolved: Update on trail planning. No new reports. Scott Kuhn needs to be contacted.

G. Rubio Canyon Gateway Trail Planning Status: No real news. Robert Ettleman is working with local property owners to secure easements.

H. Pinecrest Gate update. No new information. Monitoring continues. Steve included comments about Pinecrest Gate in official comments to San Gabriel Mountains National Monument. Mitch recounted the situation surrounding the gate.

7. Other Old Business. None

8. Other New Business. Steve will put together a web site for AltadenaTrails.org for the group.

9. Review of Task List. Mitch will forward trail report to Olga. Olga will get the trail maintenance crew contacts and schedule. Marietta to find a La Canada contact to work with. Group will remind Dennis about fence and bear-proof boxes.

10. Upcoming Events: Next ACTRWG Meeting falls on Tuesday, October 13, 2015.

11. Adjourn at 8:20pm.