Nay to horses on trail before May 15
Horseback riding on the Pine Line Rail Trail will not be allowed before May 15 and after November 15 each year.
Members of the Pine Line Rail Trail Commission put the restriction into effect at Tuesday night’s meeting after numerous complaints about horses damaging the trail surface when it is soft.
Taylor County forest administrator Jake Walcisak, said complaints to his office have increased. He said he would typically get four to five complaints a year. “This year we have had six or seven complaints already,” he said.
The major complaint has been the impact horses have had on the recently resurfaced trail bed. A layer of crushed granite was put on most of the Taylor County portion of the trail. While the surface hardens, during the spring break up and following heavy rains it softens up similar to town gravel roads. Horse hooves leave deep divots in the trail surface when it is soft which require grading to smooth out.
“With improving the trail, the expectation of maintenance has changed,” Walcisak said. “We are getting more complaints, before last year we never had complaints.”
Over the past few years, the Taylor County segment of the trail has undergone major surfacing and bridge replacement upgrades, most of the work was paid for through grants.
See this week's issue of The Star News for the complete story.