Tahoe Rim Trail offers miles for adoption | SierraSun.com

Tahoe Rim Trail offers miles for adoption

LAKE TAHOE -For those who love outdoors and want to give something back to nature, Tahoe Rim Trail organizers have a suggestion: adopt a mile.

Lynda McDowell, executive director of the Tahoe Rim Trail Organization, said a mile of the trail can be “adopted” for $5,000. So far, out of the 150 miles that make up the Rim Trail, 99 have been adopted, she said.

“People adopt a mile for a number of different reasons,” McDowell said. “It’s a nice way to recognize a special person. we get a lot of ‘in honor of,’ or ‘in memory of,’ dedications. Other people do it just because they have a love of outdoors and Tahoe.”

In recognition of the adoptions, the organization gives the new owners a 16×20 inch picture of “their” mile. Their names are also engraved on plates which are placed at the two trail heads. She said they also receive a lifetime newsletter.

Larry Sevison, of Carnelian Bay, recently purchased a mile near Watson Lake. He adopted this mile in memory of his son who perished while skiing at Northstar in 1976. He and a friend had been skiing out-of-bounds when a storm moved in and trapped them. As a result, Sevison became involved with the formation of Tahoe Nordic Search and Rescue. In addition to the mile, the Sevison family also placed a monument on Mt. Pluto where their son was lost.

“This was the closest mile to where he was lost,” Sevison said. “It’s a very beautiful meadow with a lot of wildflowers. The whole family has been up there checking it out.”

Bank of America is also in the process of adopting a mile, according to Kenneth Jones, assistant vice president manager. He said the money is received through a foundation that gives grants. Currently they have been allotted $1,000.

“Normally the foundation doesn’t do more than that contribution,” Jones said. “The mile would be nice to have. We chose the area in Tahoe City. It will be nice to have the trail completed since there are so many hikers.”

McDowell said all of the money donated to the non-profit organization goes back into the project of rebuilding the trail. She said only hand tools are used to do things such as pruning manzanita, putting in water bars, building rock walls and pulling out big boulders. Usually about 10-15 volunteers meet at 9 a.m. on a Saturday and work until 4 p.m. She said they are always looking for people with special talents with tools.

“You don’t have to know anything about trail building,” McDowell said. “We have a group leader to supervise. We just want people to have fun. I’ve noticed that men are usually the pioneers in pulling things out, while women bring up the rear and finish cleaning up.”

McDowell said the organization hopes to have completed the Rim Trail by 2001. After that they will focus on preserving their work.

Anyone interested in adopting a mile can contact Lynda McDowell at (702) 588-0686. Those interested in working on the trail, can meet Saturday, Aug. 2, across from Sunnyside Restaurant at 9 a.m. to work from Ward Canyon to the Pacific Crest Trail. Lunch will be provided.

McDowell recommends people to wear a long sleeve shirt and pants, sturdy boots, gloves, suntan lotion and mosquito repellent. Also bring plenty of water.

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