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Lower Carpenter Valley Trail Walk, Truckee Donner Land Trust

July 29 @ 10:00 am - 3:00 pm

The Lower Carpenter Valley includes wet meadow, fresh water emergent wetland, riverine, and fen habitat types, as well as red fir, lodgepole pine, and mixed conifer forest. During the summer, the meadow receives runoff from the Sierra Crest and feeds Prosser Creek with clean, cold water, that in turn sustains high quality aquatic habitat in Prosser Creek and the Truckee River
It is, in short, an example of how a subalpine Sierra meadow should work. Plants we may see include California Valerian (Valeriana californica), Corn Lily Sierra (Veratrum californicum), Bog Orchid (Platanthera dilatata), Sierra Penstemon (Penstemon heterodoxus), Mule-Ear (Wyethia amplexicaulis), One-seeded Pussy Paws (Calyptridium monospermum), and Columbian Monkshood (Aconitum columbianum).

We will be walking a 5.5-mile nature trail that was completed in 2020. It is an out and back route with a small loop at the end. The trail wanders above Prosser Creek on the edge of the forest and meadow, with long stretches of boardwalk to help protect the sensitive meadow habitat. There are minor ups and downs, but is basically flat. At the end of the trail is a spring/seep and fen/meadow area with interesting flowers. There are benches along the way if someone wants to rest or wait.

Directions: We will meet at a large public parking lot in Truckee located at 10069 Donner Pass Road at 9 am. There is limited parking at the trailhead, so we will be carpooling. It is 40-45 minute drive to the trailhead. The route to the trailhead is partly a bumpy dirt road and with potholes. This is an all-day field trip. Bring lunch, snacks and water. We will return to our vehicles in Truckee between 4 and 5 pm.

For more information about Lower Carpenter Valley and obtain a field guide of some wildflowers found there, visit: There is also an illustrated plant list on, “illustrated plant lists.” It can be printed with or without photos, in alphabetical order or by family.


July 29
10:00 am - 3:00 pm
Event Category:


Lower Carpenter Valley
10069 Donner Pass Road
Truckee, CA United States
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