The photo above is a root heave on the American River Parkway path, west of Watt Avenue. This root heave started developing more than a year ago, and has of course gotten worse. Assuming that this will be a rainy winter, come spring the heaving will accelerate greatly. The heave has been decorated by users […]

Part three of posts on the parkway trail; part 2 Parkway trail flood signing; part 1 Parkway trail low points. This is it for now. The Jedediah Smith Memorial Trail through the American River Parkway is a major commuting route for bicyclists from the suburbs to downtown, with some reverse commuting as well. It is also a recreational trail, getting […]

Part two of posts on the parkway trail; Parkway trail low points.

When the parkway trail has been flooded this year, all the way back into December but increasingly this spring, Sacramento Regional Parks has closed various segments, and even the entire parkway at times. This is understandable. The trail is, after all, in a riparian area, and what defines riparian areas is an abundance of water.

Regional Parks has posted some information about the trail on their website, particularly as more and more of the trail has been closed, and is up-to-date with a complete closure now. In December and early January the website information was frequently out-of-date. Their Twitter account has had somewhat better information about the parkway, but it focuses mostly on motor vehicle access and not on trail access and usability.

Parts of the trail are quite usable right now, but rather than addressing those parts, all of the trail is closed.

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There are two low spots on the American River Parkway trail (officially called the Jedediah Smith Memorial Trail) that flood even under moderate rainfall or flood conditions. It may seem strange to bring these low spots up when just last week perhaps 90% of the trail was underwater. The trail is in a riparian area, and so will and should flood during major flood events. But the trail is also a major commuter route for hundreds people who work downtown and live to the east, as well as a few reverse commuters like myself. After the jump, details and solutions for these two problem spots.

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