Jan 22

ECdM Watershed Protection Program Approved

The Watershed Protection Program for the El Corte de Madera Open Space has been approved. The Wednesday (01/22/04) night meeting in Los Altos culminated in a vote by the MROSD Board, which unanimously passed the plan with six votes, save one chair, Nonette Hanko, who was absent.Open Space Planner Matt Freeman made an excellent presentation to the board explaining the general details of the plan. This was followed by an interrogation by the District Board and comments from the public.

There was one unanticipated development regarding the Cross-Over or Hike-a-bike trail. It seems the staff (at least according to Matt Freeman) are now considering a possible realignment of that trail relatively close to the existing alignment. This is not necessarily going to happen, but it is being considered. A unique feature of this proposed alignment is an approx 150′ long section of stairs at the bottom Gordon Mill end of the trail. This would truly retain the name hike-a-bike!

The District is aware that occasional poaching of closed trails and unauthorized “built” trails happened in ECdM. This must end now. They will not hesitate to prosecute the law. The success of the plan depends on the participation of the trail using community. We are going to make the trails better. The illegal trails must be abandoned and restored.

We all need to be reminded that these places aren’t called preserves for nothing. They exist primarily to preserve natural habitat. Recreational access is permitted when appropriate and in ways that do not negate preservation. This is as much about Steelhead as it is about mountain bikers. It’s about quality of life, not just yours, but of life on this planet.