The Truckee Donner Land Trust is thrilled to announce the successful acquisition of Truckee Springs, 26 acres of open space along the Truckee River in downtown Truckee.
The Land Trust is working to provide public access as soon as possible, as there is no parking available on the property or on South River Street currently – stay tuned for an announcement when the property is fully open for the public to enjoy.
Truckee Springs has a long history, from the Washoe Tribe – specifically the Northern Washoe people known as the Welmelti in their language – to the Ice Palace, one of Truckee’s first attempts at drawing visitors off the train to spend time in town. The land is an important link for wildlife between the river and upland habitat and its robust riparian vegetation helps protect water quality in the Truckee River.
Recreation opportunities will abound with trails and river access (previously not available downtown). This 26-acre acquisition opens many more acres to the public by allowing visitors to cross Truckee Springs and enjoy California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s property upstream.
Starting in 2022, Truckee Donner Land Trust and the Town of Truckee will extend the Truckee River Legacy Trail across the property continuing west where it will eventually connect to Donner Lake. Construction on a new pedestrian bridge crossing the river to West River Street will also begin, creating a connection between the town’s historic commercial core and Truckee Springs, affectionately called the Wild Side of Downtown.
The earthen and paved trails on Truckee Springs will form an important hub linking Truckee with world-class backcountry trails including the Sawtooth Trail, Big Chief Trail, Tahoe Rim Trail and many others.
Truckee Donner Land Trust raised $10.3 million to acquire the property, construct the bridge and care for the land – with hundreds of local residents chipping in more than $3 million. Major funders include the California Wildlife Conservation Board, California Natural Resources Agency, Town of Truckee, Truckee Tahoe Airport, Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation, Vail Resorts EpicPromise, the Manitou Fund, Truckee River Legacy Foundation and the Martis Camp Foundation. Special thanks to major donors Ralph Eschenbach and Carol Provan – who provided a million-dollar matching gift to private donations.
While the Truckee Springs property is protected and open to the public today, we ask visitors to be considerate of the neighbors on South River Street until we are able to construct a small parking area – and eventually the pedestrian bridge – which will give better access to the land. Please don’t park in the neighborhood – it’s a short walk or bike ride from downtown. While no trails are yet built, a dirt road offers an opportunity to explore.