Sterling Mine Ditch Trail Work Party — Sunday, January 9th 9:00 – 1:00

The Siskiyou Upland Trail Association (SUTA) will lead half-day trail maintenance work parties on the Sterling Mine Ditch Trail (SMDT) the second and fourth Sunday mornings of January, February, March, and April.  Be sure to check back often for up-to-date information on work parties.

If you are an avid hiker, mountain biker, trail runner, or equestrian and would like to help keep the SMDT open and accessible, mark your calendars for these events!

The STMD is approximately 17 miles long, and mostly follows sections of the 26 mile Sterling Mine Ditch dug in the late 1800s to supply water for gold mining operations at the Sterling Mine.   Although it climbs above the ditch for several miles in two places, most of the trail is level, hugging a contour line around the western and southern shoulders of Anderson Butte as it passes through forest and field, affording big views of the Siskiyou Mountains!

WHEN:  Sunday, January 9th from 9:00 – 1:00

WHERE:  Park at Buncom (intersection of Sterling Creek Road and Little Applegate Road) by 8:45 for a carpool to this week’s trailhead,


Meet at the Deming Gulch Trailhead, ready to hit the trail at 9:00 (travel up Sterling Creek Road from Buncom about 1.5 miles, turn right onto Armstrong Road, then turn left at the “Y” and follow Deming Gulch Road (unmarked) approximately 1.5 miles to the trailhead.)

WHAT WE’LL DO: Work our way west on the SMDT approximately 4 miles one-way.  This section of the trail needs just a light brushing, so we expect a brisk pace—perfect for this north-facing trail that spends much of January in deep shade!  This is an out-and-back—we’ll return to the Deming Gulch Trailhead between noon and 1:00.

WHAT TO BRING: Loppers, a folding pruning saw, and gloves.  Water and a trail snack.  Sense of humor!

WHAT TO WEAR: Sturdy footwear, and dress in layers.  Much of this trail section is in deep shade, so it may be cold!   Rain gear if rain is forecast.   Consider wearing light colored pants to see ticks more easily (they’re out now!).

Heavy rain or snow cancels; for light or threatening rain or snow flurries, dress appropriately!

Call or email Jim Reiland at 541-899-1091 or to RSVP or if you have any questions.

NOTE:  All participants must read and sign a BLM volunteer form at the trail head.  Minors working on the trail must have parental consent. If you are planning to attend the January 9th trail party and are 18 or under, please contact Hope Robertson 541-899-5665 so she can arrange for a volunteer form to be emailed or faxed for your parent’s signature in advance.

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