[KHTS] – Hikers, volunteers and city officials gathered in the Angeles National Forest over the weekend for a ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrating the opening of Dagger Flat Trail.
“Dagger Flat is the first viable trail on our side of the (Angeles National) Forest,” said Dianne Erskine-Hellrigel, executive director of the local Community Hiking Club, who spearheaded the project. “We want to connect Santa Clarita so people can hike anywhere they want, so they can go on multi-day or backpacking trips.”
Nearly 40 people attended the ceremony including Santa Clarita Laurene Weste and representatives for Supervisor Michael Antonovich, U.S. Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon and Rep. Adam Schiff.
“Dagger Flat (Trail) was made in the 1930s but was never maintained. So we pretty much started from scratch” Erskine-Hellrigel said. “We basically crawled under the chaparral and made a new trail.”
The trail is located off Sand Canyon Road, four miles into the Angeles National Forest from the Santa Clara Divide turnoff – which remains closed to traffic after the Station Fire five years ago.
Community Hiking Club members have been working since March to restore the roughly 2.5-mile trail. The project was inspired by the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, Erskine-Hellrigel said.
While the trail is currently approved for hiking, the Community Hiking Club plans to install switchbacks to make the trail convenient for use by equestrians and bikers.
Erskine-Hellrigel anticipates the Forest Service will open the trail for multi-use by the end of the year.
The Community Hiking Club mapped out a trail that would connect Santa Clarita to Rancho Cucamonga. It is being reviewed by the National Park Service.
The organization is looking for volunteers to help restore trails, and regularly organizes group hikes. For information visit CommunityHikingClub.org.
– Jessica Lynn
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Have you been on this trail Sherrie Stolarik? Sounds intriguing.
Jonathan Murphy Let’s go!!!
No it is not suitable for horses at this time nor have I hiked this ..it is way up in sand canyon…an old trail being refurbished…not horse worthy due drop offs and slopes..
It is useable now for hikers, but the last 1/4 mile is still a little dicey. It is not trimmed to the 11′ standard for horses and there are some swtichbacks that are not suitable for either horses or mountain bikers. The minimum width for multipuse is 4′. The beginning is 4′ when we had time to hack away at the mountain to give us the 4′ required, but as you get further down there trail, it is NOT this width, so we still need to work on this. There are also rocks that need to be removed from the tread before we can have it opened for multi-use.
Raul & Brenda
I look forward to seeing what can be done to make this trail multi-use.