The single-track portion of the Quail Trail in the City of Irvine Open Space Preserve will be closed temporarily for drainage improvements. The Irvine Ranch Conservancy project will create a drainage ditch to funnel water off the trail to a catch basin at the bottom of the hill, which will make the trail more sustainable.
Many of the trails within the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks were once dirt roads used by ranchers traversing the open space. As those roads were converted into trails, Irvine Ranch Conservancy found that some may have been good roads, but did not make for such good trails. In those situations, the Conservancy Field Operations team will recommend that the City either reroute or redesign portions of the trail to better resist erosion caused by regular use and heavy rain. This particular trail portion could not be rerouted, so the Conservancy will redesign it.
The Conservancy asks that regular visitors to the Irvine Open Space Preserve observe the trail closure signage until the project is complete. A contractor working at the site will be using heavy construction equipment to reshape the surface of the trail. It is currently too steep to drain properly, and the end result will be a naturally-sloped trail that directs rainwater into drainage channels. This will help avoid the deep ruts that currently mar the trail surface and make the trail harder to use.
An update on the Quail Trail project will be made to the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks site once the work is complete. To find out more about activities in the Irvine Open Space Preserve, please visit www.LetsGoOutside.org.