National Forest Foundation

Halfway There! Building the New Big Chief Trail in Northern California

NFF Grant Partners and Projects


We are excited to report that our Big Chief Trail project in Northern California is over halfway constructed! Big Chief is a brand new seven-mile multiple use trail that is designed in particular to provide exceptional mountain biking opportunities for the Truckee-Tahoe area.

Austin Price

When finished, Big Chief will connect the Tahoe Rim Trail with the popular Sawtooth Ridge loop near Truckee, covering portions of the Tahoe National Forest, Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, and Northstar Resort. The National Forest Foundation and our partners are proud of the sustainable trail design and the opportunity to provide much-needed new recreation opportunities on National Forests in this area.   

Austin Price

The fantastic Truckee Trails Foundation crew has been making quick work of the new trail. In addition, 153 volunteers, many from the nearby Truckee community, have turned out over four volunteer days to help clear and build the trail. As a result, we are well on our way by completing this trail before the snow flies!

Austin Price

REI is providing major funding for this project. Other key partners include the Truckee Trails Foundation, Forest Service, and Northstar California Resort. The National Forest Foundation wants to send a huge THANK YOU to our volunteers, crew, partners, and funders for making this awesome project possible! 

Austin Price

Special thank you to Austin Price for photographing the Big Chief Trail Project. Find more of his photography at

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The Grand Mesa Uncompahgre and Gunnison (GMUG) National Forest in Western Colorado was one of the forests that was facing an unprecedented summer of work on top of their normal summer maintenance projects. However, thanks to a partnership between the GMUG Forest, National Forest Foundation (NFF), and Southwest Conservation Corps, much of the needed maintenance on these trails was completed in summer 2019!

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