More than 200 people were on hand Monday October 30 to help open Placer
County’s new Hidden Falls Regional Park.
Placer County Supervisors Robert Weygandt, Jim Holmes and Bruce Kranz led the festivities.
The 221-acre open space park,which features seven miles of trails suitable for hiking, running, biking and horseback riding opened with a ceremonial hike, and has been well used since then. (Click for detailed park map in PDF format)
In addition to the more vigorous activities on the seven miles of trails, park visitors are able to enjoy fishing, picnicking, wildlife viewing, photography and other passive recreational pursuits. A paved, accessible trail is also available, which begins near the parking lot.
The park is located at 7587 Mears Place, northof Mt. Vernon Roadbetween Auburnand Lincoln. (Click for location map)
Ground was broken on improvements to the 221-acre park site in July, which included construction of a paved access road, 50-space paved parking lot, equestrian staging area, utilities, restrooms and a 60-foot emergency-access bridge over Deadman Canyon Creek.
Hidden Falls Regional Parkwas acquired under the Placer Legacy Open Space and Agricultural Conservation Program for wilderness recreation and habitat protection. Outstanding natural features include Coon Creek and Deadman Canyon Creek, groves of blue oak woodlands and a year-round waterfall, 20-30 foot high.
The County acquired the site from BOR Properties LLC for $767,500. A longtime property owner, JJD Properties LTD, donated a conservation easement to the County at no cost over its entire 780-acre property. The easement will protect the acreage from ever being developed beyond the 21 home sites that are permitted through historic entitlements.
A River Parkways Grant from the State of California (Proposition 40) totaling $46,500 has helped to pay for new trails, fishing access improvements, a picnic area and informational signs.
Brenda A. Quintana, Director of Local Government and Community Affairs, attended the event on behalf of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, congratulating Board members for their vision in preserving open space. In December of 2002, the Placer Legacy Open Space and Agricultural Conservation Program earned a Governor's Environmental and Economic Leadership Award.
To visit the park, take Atwood Road west from Highway 49 in Auburn until it becomes Mt. Vernon Road. Follow Mt. Vernon to Mears Road (about four miles from Highway 49). Turn right (north) on Mears Road and follow to Mears Place.
Adjacent to this section of HiddenFallsis a 961-acre property that the county also acquired through Placer Legacy, previously called “Spears Ranch.” The county has begun an environmental-review process which must be completed before making improvements to the second site. Together, the two parcels comprise almost 1,200 acres of open space - including three miles of Coon Creek.
Hidden Falls - including the Spears Ranch parcel - has been described by Supervisor Robert Weygandt as the “crown jewel” of the county’s award-winning Placer Legacy program created by the Board of Supervisors about eight years ago.
Placer Legacy is a voluntary program to conserve open space, help preserve the local farm economy, protect native plants and wildlife, and provide more passive recreation opportunities to the public.
To visit the park, take Atwood Road westfrom Highway 49 in Auburnuntil it becomes Mt. Vernon Road. Follow Mt. Vernon Rd.to Mears Road(about 3.5 miles from DeWitt Center). Turn right (north) on Mears Road and follow to Mears Place. (See location map below)
For more information or to be a future park volunteer, please call Placer County Parks Administrator John Ramirez at 530-889-6807.