The Lost Sierra Trail: Northern California’s New 300-mile Trail for All Users

Dominic Gawel | BackcountryBackcountry

California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains offer world-famous recreation from Mount Whitney to Lake Tahoe. Yosemite’s grandeur, Lake Tahoe’s skiing, and more often steal the thunder from other parts of the stunning range. Lassen, Plumas, and Sierra Counties as well as the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship are working together to create the “Lost Sierra Trail.” The Lost Sierra Trail connects the Sierra Nevada and the Cascade mountain ranges in a 300-mile trail for all users.

What makes the Lost Sierra Trail so special? Unlike the John Muir Trail, a famous thru-hike in the southern and central Sierra Nevadas, this is an all-access trail. That means anyone or anything can use it – your dog, dirtbike, horse, mountain bike, trail runners, backpackers, e-bikes, and more. This will result in more users traveling to the area and will create more economic drive throughout the counties. 

Credit: Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship

Thorughout modern history, the primary economic drivers in the region were resrouce driven industires: mining and logging. Now, these industries are becoming a piece of history in northern California – leaving towns without a source of income. The Lost Sierra Trail is designed to bring a recreation based economic driver to the area. It provides jobs to build the trail and brings tourists to stimilate local economies. Trailheads are designed to feed directly into the main streets of each town, so trail users buy goods and services in the local communities. On top of this, there will be a Lost Sierra Trail Passport, which users get stamped at various participating busniesses in each town.

The Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship received a Resilient Communities Grant from the Sierra Nevada Conservancy to start working on the Trails Masterplan, which will continue to implement the Lost Sierra Trail. 

Mountain bikers enjoying the world class trail system in the Lost Sierra. Lakes and forests are abundant throughout the region. Credit: Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship

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4 thoughts on “The Lost Sierra Trail: Northern California’s New 300-mile Trail for All Users

  1. Allowing motorcycles seems like a really misguided plan. It will make for a really wide rutted out trail which will require more maintenance long term.

  2. Open to all users? Wow what a concept! Love seeing people not trying to limit others freedoms.

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