This award is given in recognition of successful efforts to influence public policy relating to trail planning, trail protection, trail development, or maintenance.
Clay has been advocating for trails for several years and is currently pushing for a reroute of a section of the Tahoe Rim Trail near Daggett Summit.
Growing up in South Alabama, Clay Grubb designed and built his first backcountry trail as a 16 year old Eagle Scout responsible for outpost camping at his local scout reservation. Changing uniforms, he then survived over 30 years as a Marine, with significant emphasis on ground reconnaissance activities.
Retiring to the Nevada side of Lake Tahoe, he has stayed involved in outdoor activities. He is currently a Trail Designer, Project Leader, and Senior Crew Leader with the Tahoe Rim Trail Association; a Trails Administrative Assistant with the US Forest Service; and the Nevada State Parks Trail Designer for Van Sickle Bi-State Park. He is also a student in Wilderness Education at Lake Tahoe Community College, and Leadership Instructor for the Interagency Crew Leaders Training for the Tahoe region.
Lake Tahoe is the most regulated area of the United States, with multiple agencies engaged in saving the lake’s famous blue clarity. What this means for recreational managers, is years and years of delays in accomplishing any new project. Clay has worked inside the Forest Service to streamline the process for permitting the new Daggett Summit Trail. What used to take several years of environmental review, moves through both the Forest Service and Tahoe Regional Planning Agencies review teams without the lengthy delays of past projects. His talents organizing Marines have been put to good use, getting agencies to cooperate for the common good.
Clay has partnered with Nevada State Parks and California Tahoe Conservancy, co-owners of Van Sickle Bi-State Park, to construct a trail connecting the park facilities to his proposed reroute. After six years of agency coordination, the 13+ mile Daggett Summit/Van Sickle Project finally started construction in June 2009. Because of the snow and seasonal restrictions, trail building can only take place during June-October. However, through almost 20,000 volunteer hours and two grant sources (RTP and ARRA), the trail is about 2/3 finished.
If that wasn’t enough, Clay has partnered with Nevada State Parks and California Tahoe Conservancy, co-owners of Van Sickle Bi-State Park, to construct a trail connecting the park facilities to his proposed reroute. He has hiked, skied and snow shoed the proposed alignment, hanging flags for over three years in his quest to give eloquence to his design.