Video: The Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship Connects Communities by Building Trails

Feb 23, 2021
by ECHOS Communications  

As the stewards of hundreds of miles of maintained multi-use trail, the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship (SBTS) is creating a Trails Master Plan to develop a new world-class multiple-use trail system, providing an economic recreation asset for severely disadvantaged communities across Plumas, Sierra, and Lassen counties in the Lost Sierra region of Northern California. Open spaces and a connection to nature are more important now than ever before, and the volunteer-driven vision of the SBTS sets an example all can emulate and support by donating time and resources.

Mason Werner and Jordan Carr at last light Indain Falls Ridge Quincy Ca



Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship is proud to introduce The Trails Master Plan (TMP) for Connected Communities. The Lost Sierra Route, which covers 300 miles of breathtaking views in its most preserved form, is accessible for a variety of multi-use activities. Small towns located along The Lost Sierra Route will feel the direct economic benefit, as the proposed trail will bring travelers directly into town. Fiscal support for these rural communities and small businesses is the backbone of the TMP, creating a deeper connection with the land and communities surrounding the Lost Sierra region.



These trails will be open for all to enjoy, aiming to bring mountain bikes, hikers, kayakers, moto enthusiasts, hunters, equestrians, trail runners, fishermen, and families together for a unified cause: protect and preserve our open spaces for future generations to enjoy. Doing so in an economically and environmentally friendly way is simply the only option. Fueled in part by California Prop 68 funds provided through Sierra Nevada Conservancy’s Resilient Communities Grant Program, this project has the full support of local and state governments.


About Sierra Buttes Stewardship

SBTS is a Quincy, California-based 501c3 focused on building what the organization calls “#dirtmagic” – multiple-use motorized and non-motorized trails for public use – in the Lost Sierra region of the Northern Sierra Nevada range. Since its founding in 2003, SBTS has built over 100 miles of new trail and maintained 1,200 miles of existing trail while employing a full-time Professional Trail Crew and contributing over 100,000 hours of volunteer labor.








Official Statement from The SBTS regarding Connected Communities and Trails Master Plan:

Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship (SBTS) is a non-profit organization formed in 2003, with the mission of providing quality outdoor experiences through trail construction and maintenance in the Lost Sierra region of California. Driven by a small full-time staff of Plumas and Sierra County residents, and powered by a healthy dose of volunteerism, SBTS aims to preserve, restore, and enhance multi-use trails in the Tahoe, Plumas, and Lassen National Forest. SBTS is focused on shared, multi-use trails for all trail users, helping restore, rebuild, and maintain trails to make them aesthetically pleasing, usable, and enjoyable for a wide range of recreation including pedestrians, bicycles, motorcycles, equestrians, hunters, and fishermen. We’ve worked on everything from regular singletrack to the Pacific Crest Trail and Wilderness areas, as well as Off-Highway Vehicle use of all types, ADA compliant paths and engineered multiple-use flow trails.


Volunteer trail day on the Elwell trail in Gold Lakes Basin Ca


Since its founding 17 years ago, last year SBTS celebrated its 100th mile of new trail constructed as well as logging its 100,000th hour of volunteer labor. Never one to be resting on its McLeod, last year SBTS also launched its legacy project, developing the Trails Master Plan for Connected Communities and the proposed Lost Sierra Route.

Fueled by Prop. 68 funds provided through Sierra Nevada Conservancy’s Resilient Communities Grant Program, in conjunction with a long list of local, state, and federal partners (including US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, CA State Parks, local Land Trusts), SBTS is creating a Trails Master Plan, laying out a world-class multiple-use trail system, providing an economic recreation asset for severely disadvantaged communities across Plumas, Sierra and Lassen counties.

The Lost Sierra Route, covering 300 miles of breathtaking views and nature in its most primitive form, is modeled after iconic routes like the Pacific Crest Trail or John Muir Trail. But the Lost Sierra Route is different in that it’s a Trail for Everyone; from equestrians and hikers to cyclists and dirt bikers. Also, unlike the PCT or JMT, the Lost Sierra Route will find its way onto “Main Street” in every town, bringing trail users into the heart of the town for accommodations and resupply opportunities, helping fuel a much-needed economic engine.

Building on this concept of Main Street, the Trails Master Plan will also develop the concept of a trail passport, encouraging people to register before their adventure so they can carry the passport to each community, receiving stamps and special offers from local business owners, giving trail users an incentive to come and visit each community.

The Downieville Grocery Store is the main stop for beer and provisions when you get back from a ride.

The Trails Master Plan will not only create a way for trail travelers to see these small towns, but it will also have a massive positive impact on the local economy. Small restaurants, gas stations, and local shops will have the ability to serve people from other places, creating connections as well as much-needed jobs and revenue for their business and town. Trails on public land can create local employment, attract new visitors, and eventually a new generation of residents who put a priority on the quality of life and backyard recreation opportunities; all elements in creating resilient mountain communities.


Learn more about the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship and Connected Communities plan here


47 Comments

  • 26 0
 Proud to be a resident of downieville and have worked many years for the sbts. Actually a couple shots of me in that video from working last summer. Hardest work year of my life but also the best ever. This whole deal is gonna take many years to complete! Keep up the good work guys!
  • 19 1
 Front Range resident: It must be so sick to live in a place that doesn't have semi-advanced hominids running your trail development.
  • 4 0
 Agree 100%, this looks awesome and the concept of connecting communities seems to be catching on, even here on the Front Range albeit very slowly. Definitely check out the Outside 285 plan www.comba.org/outside-285 and a good article on specific Front Range issues www.singletracks.com/trail-advocacy/mountain-biking-has-outgrown-colorados-most-popular-trails
...as an Evergreen resident, I typically point the finger at Denver Parks and Rec/Denver Mountain Parks
  • 7 1
 @chacou: As a very frustrated Jeffco resident, I would disagree. Jeffco is more opposed to mountain bikes than ever before, and as the Singletracks magazine highlights, are unwilling to work with MTB associations. They have blatantly rejected significant trail work provided for free by the Golden Giddyup, they are not willing to listen to trail proposals, they don't provide bike-only trails (except for the whopping 1.8 miles we have), they won't build a jump park (Golden Bike park is a sad excuse), and they repeatedly show the MTB community that they don't care about what we want by dismantling and destroying features like berms, drops, rolls, jumps, etc.

They prefer to cling to trail management plans that are 40-50 years old while hoping that mountainbikers will just drive to Clear Creek for better recreation. Don't get me wrong, I'm stoked on what CC is building and how willing they are to work with COMBA, but it f*cking pisses me off that my property taxes go to paying ineffectual government employees who don't give a f*ck about what their tax payers need or want. It's criminal at worst and shitty at best.
  • 2 0
 I just gave up and left the Front Range. The GiddyUp and Comba were/are really trying but JeffCo is painful to deal with. They have zero interest in making mountain biking better.
  • 1 0
 @fullendurbro: If you're frustrated with JCOS, then don't start research the "public" lands that Denver owns in JeffCo. DMP isn't mentioned in that article, ironically, but they're a complete non-starter. JCOS will at least work with COMBA and others on things, DMP doesn't even respond. Oh yeah, DMP just acquired about 450 acres in Gilpin County just outside Golden Gate State Park, Axton Ranch Mountain Park, I can guarantee you any trails that go in there will be hiker only, if they even develop anything.
  • 3 0
 The Lost Sierra is out there, a few hours from closest metro area. Front range is swelling with folks. Western slope would be more applicable as comparison or Idaho, etc. Living out in Downieville year round, for example, would be challenging unless you really don't care for human contact or don't mind having sunshine for a few months out of the year (deep valley with steep hills surrounding).
  • 1 0
 @genericmk: *2 hours, the biggest reason it's so quiet out there is because Tahoe is just to the south and has much easier access.
  • 16 0
 Love these people. Love that place. Wish Downieville didn't hunt down my tires and murder them with a vengeance. Four flats in one day... ruthless.
  • 8 0
 Dh casing
  • 2 0
 @labrinsky: Yep. DH casing all day, every day, everywhere. Haven't had a flat in years.
  • 4 0
 Downieville tire pressure rule: What you normally run +5 PSI MINIMUM. Cant tell you how many rides Ive been on there with 1st timers who get 3+ flats. Always give the advice pre-ride, but nobody listens to Turtle.
  • 1 0
 The razor blades on Sunrise Trail alone can be vexing - nothing like a flat 2 minutes from the shuttle vehicle!
  • 8 0
 I think my favorite flat happened at Downieville. Picked up a nail in one tire and when I pulled it out it had flat sides, square cross-section, which I think means it was made by hand a good long time ago. Little piece of the Gold Rush, maybe, to think about while I booted the tire and put a tube in, what beats that?
  • 2 0
 @Snfoilhat: HAHA 49er Flats. hope you save the nail. Probably from a horseshoe.
  • 7 0
 Downieville is hands-down one of the nicest places I have ever ridden my bike, the fact that the hard work, passion and welcome of the community reached me thousands of miles away and made me make the journey there to ride speaks for its self. Such an amazing community of people making the world a better place. Thank you all.
  • 6 0
 I attended and worked at a summer camp up in this area and was talking to the owner recently and she was stoked to have her town be part of the system. With covid camp was closed, but we rented it out for my bachelor party and had a blast doing some bike packing in the area. I will definitely make use of these trails and it totally takes the sting out of not getting a refund for the Downieville classic last year.
  • 6 0
 Cannot overemphasize what great work SBTS is doing! Downieville is great and gets all the attention, but the trail development in the past 10 years in Quincy, Graeagle, etc is off the hook. Make a trip there for sure. Give the good folks in the Lost Sierra your money. Also, cheers to USFS for facilitating even though they're obviously pretty preoccupied with fire management.
  • 7 0
 These folks are doing it right! And goddamn, those trail crew boys are beasts! Thanks for all the planning, hard work, and commitment to the project.
  • 9 0
 I think Pinkbike should list this one as “must watch”
  • 6 0
 Hey! Crystal Lake on Mt. Hough! I welcome more trails of any sort in this area. There is room for everyone, there is a lot of forest here.
  • 4 0
 I already want to complete the whole route and see all of the towns, ride all of the trails. I've been to Downieville once, and I will be making a second trip this year as soon as the snow melts. I've seen some of their work in other areas too and I'm pretty sure the trails these folks build will be there hundreds of years from now, they are that well built.
  • 5 0
 Wishing you well with this! It looks like the commitment and dedication is there, I hope the riders take full advantage and help support the area!
  • 3 0
 According to their icons, I can walk my bear on the trails. Cool.

But seriously, SBTS is doing great work. Love their vision *and* execution. Bravo!
  • 1 0
 Man, it's so inspiring to read and watch video about towns and regions that get it. Here in PA there are so many towns or entire counties that are economically depressed, have access to great terrain/single track and just....do nothing. Literally either sit on their hands or wait for resource extraction to come back. Only outdoor activity that the state or local communities seem to support is hunting. Such a bummer.
  • 1 0
 If they are looking to increase tourism, why don't they make sure to add all the existing trails and gravel roads to trail forks? There's tons of legal stuff that's currently off the map. If more people knew the unbelievable breadth of stuff already available (especially with the recent growth in gravel riding) you'd probably get much more tourism.
  • 4 0
 Snowshoe Thompson got nothing on SBTS! Legendary folks.
  • 3 0
 I don't know, Snowshoe Thompson was quite the badass.
  • 4 0
 Beautiful, must ride spot. Been there twice, can't wait to go again.
  • 3 0
 Rode there maybe 10 years ago and loved it. This has got me planning my next trip. Great work all!!
  • 4 0
 This is my home. Love this place!
  • 3 0
 wow. loved this video and whats going on in it. would be a dream to be on a trail crew like that brotherhood!!
  • 6 2
 eMTB wonderland.
  • 3 0
 Not triggered. That's the beauty of the Lost Sierra. Only about 2 hours from when I dwell, but Worlds Away.
  • 7 0
 I'm no big eMTB fan (especially in the crowded Bay Area, where we have enough issues with trail access), but the Lost Sierra is the perfect spot for them - many miles of trail, relatively uncrowded, and already moto-legal. Go rip.
  • 1 0
 @MtbSince84: so true. I never get why people have problems with ebikes on moto trails.
  • 1 0
 I agree there's an economical disadvantage there since is a MTB seasonal use wonderland, but is the author comparing that to living in the San Francisco Bay Area?
  • 2 0
 This is an amazing project. Stoked to try to get involved, even though it will take years of hard work.
  • 2 0
 What brand of bike is that in the middle of the Downieville Grocery photo. Nice lines....
  • 2 0
 I would write something clever but I Really need to go ride my bike now!
  • 2 0
 This makes me proud. Dirt Magic. I will live there one day.
  • 2 0
 If you build it, they will come.
  • 2 0
 Pretty rad good on you guys
  • 1 0
 My second home, literally. Love Downieville. Thanks Greg and the SBTS team for doing so much for such a beautiful place.
  • 2 5
 heh heh...butte
Below threshold threads are hidden

Post a Comment



Copyright © 2000 - 2021. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv56 0.012449
Mobile Version of Website