INCLINE VILLAGE, NV (KOLO) The new East Shore Trail officially opened Friday, June 28 in Incline Village.
"Basically the project team looked at it and said, we need to improve safety, we need to improve the environment," said Amy Berry, CEO of the Tahoe Fund. "And we just lucked out that the solution was this amazing new path."
The three-mile shared use path begins near Ponderosa Ranch Road and ends at Sand Harbor.
"There's no other path like this in the world," added Berry.
The Tahoe Fund raised over a million dollars themselves from 550 donors. The $41 million project also includes ninety-one new parking spots, plus safety improvements along the road, with rumble strips, curves and bumpers. The goal is to cut down on pedestrian injuries and car accidents, considering 2.5 million cars per year travel along State Route 28.
"During the summer, loads of people park their cars on the side of the road," said Berry. "Getting out with their kids and their coolers and their dogs, scrambling across the highway and jumping over guardrails."
Another benefit is the environmental protection of the lake and its clarity. The project also includes storm water drains and pipes to cut down on unwanted sediment.
"We were having major erosion issues and we were seeing dirt flowing from the mountain-side, right into the lake."
The path is ten feet wide, with seventeen vista points and multiple staircases giving people access to the beaches. There's also a new restroom near Hidden Beach, and trash and recycling bins to try to keep the area free from litter.
"We call this the impossible trail, because for years people said that's a nice idea, but that's impossible. You'll never be able to build that," admitted Berry. "And here we are, standing on the impossible trail."
They are still collecting donations, and a $100 gift will get the donor's name on a plaque near the parking area. Additional bear and trout plaques are also available for larger donations. If you would like to contribute, go to Tahoe Fund
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