Forest service plans to move lookout

Tribune News Service

A historic lookout tower on the east shore of Lake Tahoe could find a new home near Spooner Summit soon.

The U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit is proposing to moved the Zephyr Point Fire Lookout to a new site on top of White Hill above Spooner Summit in Douglas County.

The lookout, which was determined to be eligible for the National Register of Historic Places in 1997, would be dismantled from its current location and reassembled at the new site.

Currently located on private property in Zephyr Heights, access and views from the lookout have deteriorated due to development of the site and surrounding private property. The current location also does not offer the public the opportunity to visit and view the lookout.

The proposed relocation site overlooks Highway 50 and the intersection of State Route 28 and offers views of Lake Tahoe and the crest of the Sierra Nevada to the west.

“The new site would provide fire crews the ability to observe more of the Lake Tahoe Basin and would offer the public an opportunity to visit the site and view the lookout,” said Heritage Resource Program Manager John Maher.

The forest service would transport the lookout by truck to its new location atop White Hill. No new roads or trails are proposed. Upgrades to Forest Road 14N32A could be necessary to provide access and could include some widening and grading of the road and some branch, tree and rock removal.

The forest service would construct a foundation for the tower, designate a parking area, and install interpretive signs.

The project area would be closed during construction. Depending on funding, project work could begin as early as next summer or fall.

The forest service would restore the current lookout location if an agreement with the property owner can be reached.

Comments must be received by Dec. 13. For more information, contact John Maher at (530) 543-2671 or email or visit

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