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.

Leave a Reply