The upper part of the Richardson Lake Road in the Eldorado National Forest is open for motorized vehicle use, completing the final phase of corrective work on this route.
Richardson Lake Road is on the far northeastern end of the forest, and must be accessed through roads leading from the Lake Tahoe area. This 2.65 mile road is used to access Richardson Lake for camping and fishing, and travel to the top of Sourdough Hill to enjoy the scenic vistas, including a good view toward the Rubicon Trail. The route also provides access to the Pacific Crest Trail. A four-wheel drive vehicle must be used to reach this road.
The first phase of work allowed the Richardson Lake Road to be reopened up to the Pacific Crest Trail beginning in July 2014. Recently, improvements to the upper part of the road were completed in which a rolling dip was installed; an existing sediment basin was emptied and enlarged; and rock was placed over areas of bare ground.
The Richardson Lake Trail was identified as one of 18 routes in the Eldorado National Forest travel system which needed corrections to comply with the environmental protection guidelines in the Sierra Nevada Plan. These routes were closed in 2012 to complete further analysis and make corrections to ensure the hydrologic connectivity of meadows would not be significantly impacted by motorized vehicle use.