Shaun Clarke: Thank you for supporting local trails |

Shaun Clarke: Thank you for supporting local trails

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Shaun Clarke

To me, Nevada County is an inspiring place to live because it is full of ordinary people doing extraordinary things. I am proud of the grassroots efforts that are visible everywhere throughout the county. All of the outstanding nonprofit organizations in our region exist because people support them. I want to thank those people for their contributions.

Started 26 years ago, the Bear Yuba Land Trust relies on memberships, volunteers and donations to keep the lights on. We are blessed and humbled by the support from our local community and believe the work that we do is crucial to the county's long term preservation of environmental health and sustainability. People here really do care and I appreciate folks who are passionate about land conservation and land use in our community. I am consistently bowled over by the support we receive from individuals, both young and old.

The land trust's work goes beyond Nevada County. When land is conserved and restored it benefits people downstream in the watershed as well as visitors who come here to hike urban and high country trails. Bear Yuba Land Trust provides opportunities for people to experience nature through our Treks Program and educates individuals on the importance of scientifically informed land management strategies.

Through the month of October, the land trust is raising money for trails. Community donations go far. With last year's donations, we designed and built the Yuba Rim Trail near Bullard's Bar Reservoir at our Rice's Crossing Preserve. We also constructed the Rambler Trail at Clover Valley Preserve in Alta Sierra and the Yewei'im Bom Trail at Burton Homestead Preserve.

All of the money raised for trails stays right here in your backyard. For many, myself included, outdoor recreation is an important factor for choosing to live here. Donations to the land trust have a direct impact on the recreation opportunities for you, your family and generations to come. In addition, trails are important for our mental and physical health, have been shown to increase property values and boost the local tourism economy.

Soon, with the help of volunteers, we will build more trails at Rice's Crossing Preserve. These trails will be used for hiking, biking and horseback riding. We will also install shade ramadas, kiosks and interpretive panels to help enhance the public experience.

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In the early planning stages, Bear Yuba Land Trust is working with the City of Grass Valley to someday create a trail meandering along Wolf Creek. It is our goal to continue to develop Nevada City and Grass Valley into "Trail Towns." Imagine, stepping out your door to hike or bike a nature trail without ever getting into a car.

Thank you for your ongoing support of Bear Yuba Land Trust and all the other terrific nonprofits here in Nevada County. We are all better together.

Shaun Clarke is the land access manager for the Bear Yuba Land Trust.

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