THE TRUCKEE MEADOWS
The broader Truckee Meadows area encompasses the bowl-shaped Truckee River valley bound to the west by the Sierra Nevada Range, and to the east by the Virginia Range and Pine Nut Mountains. The Truckee River, the life blood of the Truckee Meadows, begins at Lake Tahoe where it winds through the Sierra Nevadas and eventually terminates into Pyramid Lake. A major tributary of this river, Steamboat Creek, passes through the Rosewood Nature Study Area.
Due to the vitality of the Truckee River, this region was once defined by its wetlands and meadows. However, with the surge of white settlers beginning in the 1840s, the landscape was greatly altered to meet the growing demands for water. The development of agriculture, mining, and settlements led to diversions, dams, canals, and ditches that destroyed the majority of its many wetlands. The 60 acres of marshland at the Rosewood Nature Study Area is one of these last remaining wetlands.
Photo from usgs.gov
The site that is now the Rosewood Nature Study Area opened as a municipally-owned golf course in 1991. Due to the construction of Veterans Parkway, the Rosewood Lakes Golf Course was consequently decommissioned and permanently closed in 2015. After closure, the property fell into disrepair and invasive weed species took over. This deteriorated native wildlife habitat while also impacting site access for public use.
In 2018 the City of Reno agreed to allow Truckee Meadows Parks Foundation (TMPF) to work on the site. In September 2019 AmeriCorps Wetland Restoration Technicians joined the team and began the restoration process.
Since restoration began in 2019, 28 AmeriCorps Restoration Technicians have served on the site, providing over 25,000 hours in service work. Much restoration work has also been done thanks to the help of many volunteers and project partners.
One major means of improving the wetland ecosystem is through invasive plant species removal. So far over 60 acres of invasive species have been cleared at the Rosewood Nature Study Area. After removing invasive species, it is also important to repopulate the area with native plants. So far over 1,500 native plants have been added to the site. A large garden specifically designed to attract pollinators has also been planted.
These efforts have already greatly improved the Rosewood Nature Study Area as a healthy site for local wildlife. Through bird and amphibian surveys conducted by the AmeriCorps Wetland Restoration Technicians, it is clear that the wetland will be an ideal home for a wide variety of animals, including many migratory birds, for years to come.
OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
After nearly two full years of restoration work, the City of Reno granted TMPF up to a 50-year lease of the property. On June 12th, 2021 both the Visitor Center and roughly three miles of trails were officially opened to the public. The site is still being actively restored and there are plenty of opportunities for engaging the community in volunteer work and community science. In addition, the Rosewood Nature Study Area is a wonderful place for connecting with nature, walking, birdwatching, and even fishing.
Ribbon Cutting Ceremony on Opening Day
To establish and steward a publicly accessible Great Basin wetland habitat where the community can come to learn about and appreciate the importance of our natural open spaces and local parks.
Develop a sustainable plan to restore and conserve sensitive wetland and upland habitat for native plants, wildlife, and natural resource management.
Rehabilitate existing trails and develop additional non-motorized trails to establish the wetland as a node in the larger network of area parks and open spaces.
Offer a state of the art, environmentally conscious nature center with hands-on, interactive exhibits for both children and adults to provide park-based programs, interpretive signage, and outdoor classroom spaces for families, community groups, and schools.
Inspire community members to take a proactive volunteer role in the preservation and improvement of our parks and open spaces in order to strengthen the bond between the community and their open spaces.
Cost Implementation Plan
Watch this Video to Learn More!
Then and Now
This project is funded in part by a grant from the Truckee River Fund at the Community Foundation of Western Nevada.
This project is supported by the National Audubon Society-George Whittell Nevada Environmental Fund.
We've partnered with Nevada Bugs and Butterflies to install a pollinator garden at the proposed nature study area. The area is currently being solarized to remove invasive species.
The grant from Union Pacifica allowed us to enhance the trails making them easier to walk on and safer!
We used a portion of grant we received from Nevada Dream Tags to replace the fence along the entrance to the proposed Nature Study Area.