Officials warn popular Spooner spot can pose hazard to sledders

Kurt Hildebrand

The sled hill near Spooner Summit on highways 50 and 28 in northwestern Douglas County is a popular spot, but can pose dangers to the unwary.

The Spooner sled hill is unsupervised and an be hazardous. Officials also ask visitors to clean up after themselves.

Last year, a young adult was permanently paralyzed by a serious sledding injury, Tahoe-Douglas Fire Marshal Eric Guevin said.

On Thursday, the fire district and the U.S. Forest Service urged locals to alert friends and visitors that Spooner is overcrowded and unsupervised, which can often lead to hazardous conditions.

“Paramedics are routinely responding to this location for concussions and broken limbs,” Guevin said. “Choosing to sled at this and other general forest locations is risky and potentially dangerous.”

It has been seven years since a 15-year-old boy died in a sledding accident at Tahoe Meadows off Mt. Rose Highway.

The boy was riding an inner tube when he struck two trees at a high rate of speed.

The Spooner sledding hill is so popular nearly a ton of trash was collected there last January, prompting an effort to get people to take their sleds with them.

With a chance of more snow in the forecast and two three-day weekends in a row, it’s likely there will be more people at the location than usual.

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