If you ask the United State Forest Service they will tell you that the LCC bike trail is officially closed. If you ask me I will tell you that is is Unofficially open. After a super fun two laps the other night with some fellas that will remain nameless I can confirm that there is absolutely no reason for this trail to be closed. See the lame email response the local Forest Service guy sent to local riders to explaining the closure below.
I am sure Steve is a good guy, but he clearly has not been anywhere near the LCC trail in a while. There is zero possibility of being injured of killed due to the river at this point.
Hi, and thanks for the inquiry. We are receiving numerous inquiries which let us know we are not doing an adequate job of getting the message out – we will work on that. The status of the trail is that it is closed, and has been since June 2010 (WTF?) when a flooding event compromised the lower bride and adjacent trail. The closure is in effect from the trailhead near Lisa falls on the top of the trail to the Temple Quarry trailhead on the bottom. The following bullets are talking points that describe the rationale for the closure:
- The trail was closed 06/08/10 for – “Purpose of the closure is to provide for public health and safety due to flooding, trail washouts and while crews are repairing flood damagealong Little Cottonwood Creek.”
- The lower trail bridge, located above the Wasatch Resort community, was clogged with debris during the run-off on 2010, which caused the creek to divert onto the trail, causing damage to the trail.
- The trail was repaired and the debris was removed from the bridge in late summer 2010 by community members who have an easement across the bridge.
- The bridge may also have received some structural damage as a result of the debris.
- Due to easement and ownership issues, a complete structural assessment of the bridge has not been completed.
- These issues are close to resolution and it is expected that the assessment will be completed as soon as spring run-off is complete and water levels drop.
- Stream channel restoration around the bridge occurred this spring (04/11) to re-establish to stream channel flow to minimize potential flooding impacts to the bridge and trail. There is still a high potential for flooding to affect the bridge and trail due to the remaining record snowpack and predicted run-off.
- The bridge and trail will remain closed until the high water hazard has passed and a final assessment of the bridge is completed.
- We expect the run-off will continue through early July. If there are no additional impacts to the bridge or trail, the closure order would be lifted and the trail would re-open. However, there is potential for additional damage to the trail and/or bridge and the potential for the closure to remain in place until all facilities are deemed safe for public use.
- The bottom line is to protect public safety. (BS!!!) During the flooding of 2010, flood waters were running over and around the bride and on the trail. We expect to have similar conditions this year and these potential situations would be life threatening. We encourage the users to be patient and to use caution during this record run-off season.
We recognize this trail receives substantial use from hikers and mountain bikers and our goal is to open the trail as soon as possible. The likely scenario is that the trail will remain closed through the high run-off period, potential into mid July. The lower bridge is already showing signs of being compromised with water undermining and running around the structure. This presents a potential hazard and based on last year’s event, we believe the potential is greater this year due to the record snowpack and anticipated run-off. Our hope is that the bridge is not destroyed or severely compromised and will be in a condition to allow travel when the run-off subsides. We will work to post this information on our website and you are free to contact me at the number below. – Steve
Steve Scheid – Environmental Coordination;
Winter Sports, Trails & Wilderness Management
Salt Lake RD; Uinta-Wasatch-Cache NF
O: (801)733-2689; F: (801)733-2684
I translate this email to say. “We are really lazy and have not done anything since June of last year to get this trail back open. We don’t like the downhill mountain bikers using this canyon and have decided to keep the trail officially closed so we can harass them at will. We know there is nothing actually wrong with the trail but we will claim public safety is at risk so that we can keep it closed without anyone questioning us. If you have a problem with that too bad! We are the federal government and we answer to no one and there is nothing you can do about it. Have a nice day”