WENATCHEE-This Friday, December 1st, the Sage Hills Trails will close to hikers and mountain bikers to provide winter habitat for mule deer.
The seasonal closure affects all lands owned by the Chelan PUD and the Chelan-Douglas Land Trust, which encompasses the area between Number 1 Canyon and Horse Lake Road. PUD wildlife officials say because of the early-season snowfall, mule deer are already seeking cover and forage.
The PUD owns about 960 acres in the heart of the Sage Hills and manages the area as a wildlife preserve as required by its federal license to operate Rock Island Dam.
The Chelan-Douglas Land Trust supports the area closure by closing public access to the Sage Hills Trail system at area trailheads.
Plans are to re-open the Sage Hills Trails to hikers and bicyclists on or close to April 1st, 2018, if habitat conditions allow.