Buttermilk Bend Trail

IN THE FOOTHILLS, LOCALS AND VISITORS have long welcomed spring’s arrival with a walk among the wildflowers at South Yuba River State Park in Nevada County. Docents provide guided wildflower walks on weekends through May 14.

The Buttermilk Bend Trail, which winds above the wild and scenic South Yuba River, is highly regarded for the many species that bloom on its hills and slopes. Each season observers are delighted with an ever-changing tableau of spring color.

Docent led hikes last about two hours. The Buttermilk Bend Trail is an easy two mile hike out and back. Meet at the trailhead at 11 a.m. in the South Yuba River State Park north parking lot. Follow Pleasant Valley Road north past the Visitor Center over the South Yuba River. Parking is $5. Sturdy walking shoes, hat and water are recommended. A $3 donation is requested. (Dogs are not permitted on the guided walks.)

Bring a picnic lunch and allow time to take in the park Visitor Center, check out the covered bridge and barn (both built in 1862), and the restored 1920s gas station.

The Visitor Center is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Thursday-Sunday until Memorial Day and every day from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. starting Memorial Day weekend. For more information, call the park at 530-432-2546, or visit

Bridgeport Covered Bridge Restoration
In January, Gov. Brown released the proposed 2017-18 State Budget, which included an allocation of $3.2 million for the costs for restoration of the Bridgeport Covered Bridge in Nevada County, a local historical treasure. This achievement resulted from advocacy work by the Save Our Bridge Campaign Committee, the South Yuba River Citizens League and County Supervisors.

Funding for the project was initially identified in a 5-year infrastructure plan for $1.3 million. But project costs in- creased to $3.9 million after an extensive assessment. “We united as a community to save the bridge, and it worked,” says Caleb Dardick, SYRCL’s executive director.

(Photo: Tony Finnerty)

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