Conservancy may buy Sunset Ranch |

Conservancy may buy Sunset Ranch

Andy Bourelle

The California Tahoe Conservancy is considering making one of its larger South Shore land purchases.

The agency’s governing board will decide Friday whether to spend $2.5 million to purchase the Sunset Ranch in Meyers, 189 acres of land on the Upper Truckee River.

“We have acquired much larger pieces on the North Shore, but this will be one of our larger acquisitions on the South Shore,” said Dennis Machida, executive officer of the California Tahoe Conservancy. “It will be a key piece for us.”

The Conservancy has purchased, since the beginning of its operation in 1985, more than 5,000 parcels of land on the California side of the Lake Tahoe basin. The agency preserves and restores environmentally sensitive parcels of land to help restore the clarity of Lake Tahoe, enhance wildlife and provide recreational opportunities when the land can handle it.

“These kind of pieces of the ecosystem are very important to preserve and restore because the water runs right into the lake,” Machida said. “What we do when we acquire land that’s been disturbed like that is try to restore vegetation, enhance wildlife habitat, restore the river and protect the land.”

Machida said the Conservancy will go through a planning process to determine what its plans for the land will be.

Having trails and areas set up for the public is a possibility.

“The land will be publicly owned, and we will develop interim management of the property until we determine a plan for it,” said Bruce Eisner, acquisitions manger for the Conservancy. “(Before the plan is established) it isn’t going to be ‘open to the public’ in a sense, because we don’t have something to open. There won’t be anything other than the land.”

Eisner said the Conservancy is pleased with the opportunity of being able to have the land for the benefit of Lake Tahoe’s clarity, wildlife and the public.

“By virtue of the fact that the Upper Truckee River runs through the property, it’s a unique resource,” Eisner said. “It’s unique for wildlife, and it’s unique for people.”


Regular meeting of the California Tahoe Conservancy Board

What: Consideration of purchasing Sunset Ranch

When: Oct. 2, 10 a.m.

Where: Lake Tahoe Community College Fine Arts Theater

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