San Juan Capistrano

                                City to Correct Mis-labeled Trails 

In the September edition of the CCS, we printed an article about the City having illegally re-labeled equestrian-only trail easements as multi-use (hiking/biking/equestrian). Residents in several neighborhoods have complained about hikers, bikers and ATVs accessing trails on private property that were intended only for equestrian use. According to residents, break-ins have increased, fencing has been removed to allow access for recreational vehicles in areas with dry brush, people using the trails for parties have left trash and other paraphernalia behind, and bikers have spooked horses on equestrian-only trails, posing a risk to riders.

The City's Recreational Trails Map incorrectly designates
several trails as being "multi-use" when the easement
for them was granted to the City as "equestrian use only".
Source: City of San Juan Capistrano

The City has printed and distributed maps, posted signs on the various trails and on Ranch Viejo Road (with a receptacle for maps), posted the incorrect trail map on their website and videotaped the trails which until recently were also posted on the City website. The videos subsequently made their way onto YouTube. The Chamber of Commerce has also promoted the incorrect trail maps.

We reached out to the City to determine what if any, action was being taken to correct the mis-
abeled trails. According to Assistant Interim City Manager David Ott, City staff are currently finalizing the review of all trail easements. "Staff will very soon be walking any identified trails that have easements indicating for equestrian use and [will] remove signage that indicates multi-use trails. New signs will be ordered and installed when they are received" said Ott. The City has already removed videos of the trails.

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