River runnin’, the avalanche man and a grad does good | SierraSun.com
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River runnin’, the avalanche man and a grad does good

Norm and Alan Nicholls
Nicholls Real Estate Group

Dammed if he does, dammed if he doesn’t: A recent article in the Sierra Sun pointed out the latest dilemma of our water master(s). To release, or not to release, the water from Tahoe, and other lakes and reservoirs, is more complex than just prudent management of our water resources.

There are laws, contractual agreements and special requirements to sustain downstream water supply, agriculture, wildlife and other water-related uses of the Truckee River.



The plight of the Truckee River rafting companies and their patrons is real and understood. However, the water master cannot just go open the gates between 9 p.m. and 5 p.m. during the summer months. The best hope for more, and consistent, water flows for rafters is if the level of Lake Tahoe gets to the top of the dam, which it may still do this year.

In the meantime, take advantage of what little flow there is, as did six rafters seen last week. This group of men and women in their 20s were basically walking a shallow part of the river with their rental raft. In the middle of the raft was a rather large ice chest, and it was obvious what was in the chest and in their hands.



The 26th annual Old Timer’s Picnic and Truckee Reunion is slated for July 22, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Truckee River Regional Park (rain or shine). This annual event is hosted by the Truckee-Donner Historical Society and everyone is invited.

Old-timers can definitely teach the rest of us a thing or two about Truckee’s past, and we are counting on Sharon Pace Arnold, Pat Northrop, Mary DeLisle and any other Truckee “oldies-but-goodies in attendance to fill us in with a story or two. Have a great day.

Many in Truckee-Tahoe mourned the recent passing of Norman A. Wilson. We send our condolences to his family and friends. A 55-year resident, Norm Wilson was a pioneer in the ski and snow industry of the Northern Sierra. According to his daughter, Robie Wilson Litchfield, “my Dad began his life on snow in the early ’50s at Sugar Bowl and moved to Squaw Valley a few years later to begin his avalanche career under the tutelage of Monte Atwater. He was a member of the avalanche crew during the 1960 Olympics.

“Dad was not only excellent at avalanche understanding, he was also excellent communicating that understanding in interesting, eloquent, and sometimes humorous ways.”

Robie and her family established The Norman A. Wilson Avalanche Education Fund last December.

“It saddened my father that people still lose their lives out in the wilderness when education is available. We, therefore, felt it was important that we perpetuate his name in association with the legacy (of avalanche education) he established, and to insure it lives on.”

We urge anyone who has ever enjoyed the exhilaration of skiing the “steep and deep” to make a tax-deductible donation to this fund by sending a check to: The Truckee Tahoe Community Foundation, PO Box 366, Truckee, CA, 96160. Make sure to designate “The Norman A. Wilson Avalanche Education Fund” in your correspondence and on your check.

These were the words heard by 88 batters when facing Heather Shove in the Southwestern Athletic Conference softball league this year. Raised in Truckee, Heather was always known for her athletic and academic abilities. Upon graduation from Truckee High School in 2002, Heather accepted a full athletic scholarship to Jackson State University in Jackson, Mississippi.

“Going from a predominantly white school to a predominantly black school was quite a change for me,” Heather said. “I loved every minute of my college experience and met a lot of great friends. I wouldn’t change my college experience for anything.”

Heather was a four-year starter at Jackson State, and she shined in her senior year. In pitching, she led the SWAC conference with 13 wins in 18 starts and was third in strike outs with 88. Heather graduated summa cum laude, with a bachelor’s degree in biology with a concentration in physical therapy. She is scheduled to begin doctorate work in physical therapy at the University of St. Augustine in St. Augustine, Florida. Way to go girl!

It was the Mountain Area Preservation Foundation (MAPF), some 20 years ago that paid to have balloons placed above the Truckee River to indicate the height and location of the future “Truckee Bypass”. Judith Vrooman was our early bird winner submitting her correct answer at 8:55 a.m. the morning of publication of our last column. Other winners included May and Ed Candler, Denny Dickinson, Val Kelly, Buffalo Cano, and Jim Duffy. Thanks for playing!

Norm and Alan Nicholls of the Nicholls Real Estate Group are affiliated with Dickson Realty at 11500 Donner Pass Rd.

Mountain Hardware has become the most popular “Hardware/Boutique” store in Truckee. 1) Where was Mountain Hardware’s original location? and 2) What store preceded Mountain Hardware in its current location? Call us at 550-5035 or e-mail us at nnicholls@dicksonrealty.com with your answer.


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