2016-06-14 – June Meeting Minutes (Draft)

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

…from Arroyo Seco to Eaton Canyon  

7:00 PM, Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Altadena Community Center, 730 E Altadena Drive

Agenda (Draft

1. Introductions for new attendees.  Lori Paul, Steve Messer, Mitch Marich, Marietta Kruells, Kevin Singleton, Ward Cochran (Former resident visiting Kevin).

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

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

4. Review Minutes and Action Items from April meeting (thank you Steve Messer!). Approved unanimously with a few grammatical corrections.

5. County / City / U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered later on agenda. No official representatives were available for updates.

6. Any serious new trail conditions or problems requiring immediate attention (first-hand reports strongly preferred; photos much appreciated)?  East end of ACT is still in need of the previously noted maintenance, but no new problems reported.

Asphalt has been removed from Loma Alta Park, other improvements were made, but the trees have been neglected and many have died. They continue to die each year. There are some Coulter pines and California Black Walnuts across the street from Loma Alta park. No reason that the SPS needs those areas. Four or more Coulters have died. They need deep watering and a well out to the drip line. Took video of the sprinklers “watering.” They don’t fill the tree wells, they hit the bark, not the dirt, and this summer these trees may not survive the summer. It will make the staging area less pleasant. The horse waterers are broken, slimy and contain mosquito larvae. The water fountain is disgusting, and not up to health standards. The bathrooms have never been opened, even though there is a stall for men and a stall for women. These date back 16 years. Native White Alders were planted to provide shade to the hitching posts. They are dying and not providing shade. Some of the trees have been long gone, the only evidence is the empty tree wells and irrigation. The shade trees need to be replace. There needs to be some kind of rustic seating for the area. There were Adirondack chairs placed in the area, but these have been stolen.  Seating need not be expensive or elaborate; rock or log rounds for seating would suffice.  A safer trail connection could be placed through the park by moving the high fence along Loma Alta up, moving the low fence down and putting in a split rail fence.  

The Crib trail which ran along the south edge of the SPS has been lost, and is an important connection for equestrians to avoid dropping down Sunset ridge road and across Loma Alta on the pavement. The trail does not appear in the County Trails web site.

Motion was made to write a letter to DPW, Parks and Rec, Health Department  made by Marietta. Seconded by Mitch. Unanimous. The letter should include details of the problems with plumbing, landscaping, bathrooms and amenities, and the Crib Trail.

7. Current Tasks

a) Fire Season Preparation:  Lori has been working with Sergeant Manning. County doesn’t have any closure signs for Chaney Trail for July 4th. Lori will follow up to pursue a closure sign.

b) Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments.  Nothing to report.

c) 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.  No report available.

d) DPW Devil’s Gate Reservoir (Hahamongna Watershed Park) / ACT Trailhead / Recreation impacts?  Nothing new to report.

e) La Vina litigation resolved: Update & resumption of trail planning. No new updates on La Vina.

f) Rubio Cyn Gateway trail planning status. No new updates.

g) Update on locked Pinecrest Gate. Mitch Marich reports that things are relatively normal, with people getting locked in and calling the Sheriff to let them out.  Kevin Singleton reported that the gate was installed about 1980, right after the Pinecrest Fire. The trail was in continuous use since construction in the early 20th century, making this an RS2477 case.

8. Other Old Business

9. Other New Business

4th of July planning for trail safety and wildfire prevention. Early Chaney Trail Gate closure and temporary no parking in turnouts. Keith, the new Millard Campground host may be a resource for fire education of the public.  d

  1. Review of Task List for next meeting
  • Lori and Marietta to write a letter about Loma Alta Park.
  • Lori will update fire education brochures and signs out for 4th of July.
  • Design a sign to be used to educate the public on fire safety for 4th of July.

Carried over from last month:

  • Olga to ask Rudy Valenzuela, head of trails crew, when he is planning to come back to the ACT, to help coordinate repairs with this group.
  • Mitch will compile a report of trail conditions for Olga to pass on to the maintenance crew.
  • Olga was to supply a map of the Loma Alta Park.
  • 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 August 9 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center). Note there is no meeting in July.

12. Adjourned at: 8 pm.

June ACTRWG Meeting Agenda

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

…from Arroyo Seco to Eaton Canyon  

7:00 PM, Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Altadena Community Center, 730 E Altadena Drive

Agenda (Draft)

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 April 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)? Special meeting focus on poor condition of Loma Alta Trailhead & Staging Area + Disappearance of associated Old Crib Trail from County ACT maps. / Lori Paul & Marietta Kruells

7. Current Tasks

A. Fire Season Preparation: Maintain fire roads / trails for Fire Dept. access (cooperation between County & USFS), crew staging, and emergency evacuation routes. Plan 4th of July closures / public education. Olga Ruano / LA County, Dennis Merkel / USFS Recreation Staff Officer

B. Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments. Progress? Robert Staehle / ACTRWG

C. 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

D. 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

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

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

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

8. Other Old Business

9. Other New Business

4th of July planning for trail safety and wildfire prevention. Early Chaney Trail Gate closure and temporary no parking in turnouts.

10. Review of Task List for next meeting

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

12. Adjourn

May 2016 ACTRWG Meeting Minutes

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

…from Arroyo Seco to Eaton Canyon  

7:00 PM, Tuesday. May 10, 2016

Altadena Community Center, 730 E Altadena Drive

Minutes

  1. Introductions for new attendees.   1. Introductions for new attendees.   Jeremiah Small, local resident, Steve Messer, Mitch Marich, Olga Ruano, Rob Staehle, Marietta Kruells, Kevin Singleton, Lori Paul.
  1. Desired adjournment time for this meeting?   8:30pm
  1. Decision on meeting Secretary & Recorder of Action Items.   Steve Messer will record minutes.
  1. Review Minutes and Action Items from April meeting:. Corrected spelling of “For.”  Approved unanimously with this one correction.    
  2. County / City / U.S. Government Announcements of any items not covered later on agenda: Nothing new to report.
  1. Any serious new trail conditions or problems requiring immediate attention?   

Mitch covered two segments of the trail from Zane Gray to Eaton Canyon, then from Cobb estate to Canyon. On the west end there is a lot of brush growing into the trail, not yet obstructing the trail; primarily mustard. No damage or changes from recent rains, but still some work is needed. The ridge above Skyline where there are switchbacks there is some rutting. As you approach Eaton Canyon Hans Ghekiere reported that there was a landslide that he cleared from the trail. Private property gate at Eaton Canyon, water is undercutting the gate and a rut is developing back up the trail. Another similar rut further down a long fall-line section. It would be best to be pro-active in repairing this damage before it becomes major. The two problems are 50 yards apart. Olga reported that Sup. Antonovich’s trail days event is taking priority for the trail crew at the moment. Olga can ask Rudy Valenzuela, head of trails crew, when he is planning to come back to the ACT.

From Lower Sam Merrill/Cobb Estate, the ACT heading west needs to be completely rebuilt, brushed in, fall-line, unsustainable alignment, with lots of rocks. Camp area with wood pile and graffiti on rocks and trees next to trail. Can’t see it from the road, at approximately 34°12’19.6″N 118°07’37.6″W.

Unauthorized trail up the fire break at Cobb Estate, creating an erosion problem near that location. Downed homeowner’s fence along a section of the trail immediately west of Canon drive.

These and other problems to be compiled in a report by Mitch Marich to Olga Ruano.

New sign 100 yards downhill from Canon has one trail sign pointing to nowhere. There is a proposed school for this location. There may be an opportunity to negotiate an easement for an existing trail. Skyline gap, dead ends at Summer Kids. This easement could cover 75% of the gap. There is no existing easement across Summer Kids. Camp Chiquita historically allowed the trail to be used by the public, but the trail was closed temporarily and stayed that way. If the Summer Kids property is developed, it may be an opportunity to seek an easement. Lori described the historic alignment of the trail through the Skyline gap. A potential easement may be available through the Zorthian Ranch and/or other properties. More research is needed on existing easements, and “lost” easements on deeds that have not made it onto a map. Olga reported that in the early 20th century easements were not surveyed, but just recorded as a description, and they are trying to catch up on their property and easement recordings.

7. Current Tasks   

a) Fire Season Preparation:  Maintain fire roads / trails for Fire Dept. access (cooperation between County & USFS), crew staging, and emergency evacuation routes. Plan 4th of July closures / public education. Olga Ruano / LA County, Dennis Merkel / USFS Recreation Staff Officer.  Lori compiled some information that was discussed in 2012 to clear evacuation routes for local residents in anticipation of a bad fire season.

b) Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments. Progress? Robert Staehle / ACTRWG. No Report, but refer to Mitch’s report.   

c) 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.  Property owners have not yet been contacted, but it is still planned.

d) 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. No new information, ongoing local concern about water transfer from Arroyo Seco to Eaton Canyon.

e) La Vina litigation resolved:  Update & resumption of trail planning. Marietta Kruells, Olga Ruano / LA County. HOA have agreed to the arranged boundaries with the County and the MRCA. Minor progress.

f) Rubio Cyn Gateway trail planning status / discussion with AFC. Olga Ruano / LA County. Jeremiah Small reported that there is a new section of trail from the Creek up to the Lone Tree trail, with pin flags and evidence of recent work. Sean Green has been maintaining the Lone Tree trail. There was a tool cache up there, probably belonging to Paul Ayers. Robert Ettleman had a conference call with John Howell about the Geotechnical report and MOU with maintenance conditions for a 20’ wide trail easement.

g) Update on locked Pinecrest Gate. Mitch Marich or Paul Ayers. Mitch reported that people have been climbing over the fence, and other ongoing issues.

  1. Other Old Business. Ken Burton trail restoration was completed by CORBA and MWBA with 1650 volunteer hours from 98 individual volunteers over 6 months, 15 group days and 16 prep days. Ken Burton’s family were in attendance at the opening, held during the MWBA Pancake Breakfast on May 1st.
  1. Other New Business.  The first two chapters of the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument Management Plan EA have been released to the public in advance of the public comment period. They are available at the USFS web site
  • On the Mount Lowe Railway right of way trail above Rubio Crest in the northeast corner along Rubio Vista, a gate is rumored to be been planned. We don’t need another gate.
  • Marietta asked for a map of the area around Loma Alta Park to aid in planning safer access points to the park.
  1. Review of Task List for next meeting:
  • Olga to ask Rudy Valenzuela, head of trails crew, when he is planning to come back to the ACT, to help coordinate repairs with this group.
  • Mitch will compile a report of trail conditions for Olga to pass on to the maintenance crew.
  • Olga was going supply a map of the Loma Alta Park.

Carried over:  

  • 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.
  1. Upcoming Events:   The next ACTRWG meeting falls on Tuesday, 2016 June 14 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center).  Note that we will skip the July meeting.
  • ACONA 24 May Meeting, 7:00-8:30pm at ACC Re: “Traffic, Bike & Pedestrian Safety in Altadena” with speakers from CHP (Capt. Steve Strull, Officer Mike Ulloa, and Officer Phil Cooper) and Altadena Sheriffs (Capt. Vicki Stuckey & Lt. Rob Lewis) / Also, “Fire Danger is Early this Year” re:  Fire laws; property preparation; who to call re: overgrown shrubs, piles of kindling, etc.  
  • June 4, 2016, LA County Multi-Use Trail Day at Pathfinder Park in Rowland Heights. A free event including trail activities, entertainment, raffles and food.
  1. Adjourned at 8:30.

 

2016-05-10 – ACTRWG Agenda

Altadena Crest Trail Restoration Working Group (ACTRWG) Steering Committee

…from Arroyo Seco to Eaton Canyon  

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

7:00 PM meeting at Altadena Community Center

(730 E Altadena Dr.)  

Agenda

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 April 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   

a,  Fire Season Preparation:  Maintain fire roads / trails for Fire Dept. access (cooperation between County & USFS), crew staging, and emergency evacuation routes. Plan 4th of July closures / public education. Olga Ruano / LA County, Dennis Merkel / USFS Recreation Staff Officer  

b. Re-grading to new County standards for erosion control on vulnerable ACT segments. Progress? Robert Staehle / ACTRWG

c. 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  

d. 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

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

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

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

8 Other Old Business   

9. Other New Business    

  1. Review of Task List for next meeting   
  1. Upcoming Events:   The next ACTRWG meeting falls on Tuesday, 2016 June 14 (2nd Tuesday of each month, unless cancellation is announced, 7pm at the Altadena Community Center).   

ACONA 24 May Meeting, 7:00-8:30pm at ACC Re: “Traffic, Bike & Pedestrian Safety in Altadena” with speakers from CHP (Capt. Steve Strull, Officer Mike Ulloa, and Officer Phil Cooper) and Altadena Sheriffs (Capt. Vicki Stuckey & Lt. Rob Lewis) / Also, “Fire Danger is Early this Year” re:  Fire laws; property preparation; who to call re: overgrown shrubs, piles of kindling, etc.  

  1. Adjourn   

 

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