Remember, Mother Nature (or the government) is probably re-doing some of these trails as you read this.  Nothing is guaranteed!  Check the LBHA website frequently,  or e-mail LBHA if you find something to correct or add.  Read   about  "Trail  Safety and Etiquette"  on the LBHA Trail Welcome Page

Updated Monday May 30, 2011
Visitor #

Empire Mine Trails

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Location: Grass Valley
Most recently updated: July 2002

 This State Park maintains about 10 miles of trails that are comfortably cool even when the Loomis temperature reaches 105. One rider was recently heard to remark, Its worth the trip even if we never leave the parking lot! Most trails are shaded with towering redwoods, with the sounds of birds and the refreshing scent of pine and manzanita. Trails are road-width or single track, footing is very good, and there are a few easy stream crossings possible. This is a good outing for an inexperienced horse.

A cool trail at Empire Mine during
hot August in Loomis

The trails are so well-marked that it would be difficult to be lost for long.
Some are multi-use, some for horses, some restricted to hikers. Walkers must
leash their dogs. Because the trails loop around and through each other, you
can tailor the length of the ride to the experience and stamina of the
horses, as well as to the weather. From the horse parking area at Penn Gate,
you can follow the Hardrock Trail, make the Osborn Hill loop, continue across
Hwy 174 to more trails including property owned by the Nevada County
Irrigation District.

This park was the site of an enormous gold mine, and the trails pass old
equipment, shafts, and areas of dangerous tailings. Park literature stresses
the importance of staying on trails to avoid old mine shafts!

 Directions: Take I-80 north, exit at Auburn to continue north on Hwy. 49 to Grass Valley. Exit at Empire Street, turn right onto E. Empire Street, cross So. Auburn St., and very shortly turn right into the staging area entrance (Pennsylvania Mine area). The combination for the gate is 1941; lock the gate behind you for security. The parking lot will easily accommodate about 15 horse trailers. There is a porta  - potty, but no tie rails or running water for either horses or humans. A park information board displays a good map; copies are usually available as well. Call the State Park Ranger at 530-273-8522 if you have further questions. This about a 45-minute drive, barn-to-staging area, from the LBHA arena in Loomis.