Featured News, Siskiyou, South County

Dunsmuir’s Tauhindauli Park Has Been Getting a Facelift

Lots of work in Tauhindauli Park

Dunsmuir’s Tauhindauli Park has been getting a facelift this week as 13 Deadwood CDCR Conservation Camp Correction and Rehabilitation inmates work on removing noxious weeds and other invasive plants from the park using hand tools, weed whackers, and chainsaws supervised by Cal Fire Captain Thomas Pitman.

 Immates stand among the piles of debris in the park that will be hauled away by the City of Dunsmuir.

Dunsmuir City, Friends of Tauhindauli Park, and the Dunsmuir Parks District have been working together to identify and clean up decades of overgrown vegetation so native plants can be reintroduced back into the park. 

In the 1850s, pioneers came to this area to create a resort and stagecoach stop at this beautiful setting where Soda Springs emerges next to the Sacramento River. Then came the Union Pacific Railroad.  The resort lasted until 1920 when the highway was constructed through the park to accommodate automobiles.

Angel Gomez with Friends of Tauhindauli Park, stands behind one of the informational signs of the history of Tauhindauli Park about his great-grandfather’s resort and stagecoach that was built there before automobiles. 

In 1991, Union Pacific gave a settlement to the City of Dunsmuir after the Cantera Spill. Four years ago, the City of Dunsmuir asked to take over the park from the Recreation and Parks District. 

Dunsmuir resident, Angel Gomez, has strong family ties to the park’s history and thus has a personal interest in maintaining this public recreation area and restoring its magnificent beauty to be enjoyed by others. He leads the Friends of Tauhindauli Park in this project along with Recreation and Parks Administrator Mike Rodriguez and the City of Dunsmuir. Together,  they have implemented this project, clearing the weeds out down to the bare soil to replant the area with native plants.

One of many invasive noxious weeds that started growing in Tauhindauli Park through the years. They are being removed and replaced with native plants.

Since the 1850s, there have been about a dozen fruit-bearing trees of apples, pears, and walnuts that are still producing fruit in the park though many are infected with fireblight that will be sprayed to save what is left.

Angel Gomez, one of the lead members of the Tauhindauli Park cleanup project, holds a pear growing on one of a dozen fruit-bearing trees that have been growing in the park for over 100 years. 

Caltrans workers picking up trash in Tauhindauli Park from the southbound bridge restoration project. Caltrans working on the Southbound lanes of the bridge in Tauhindauli Park. The project to replace the roadway concrete is estimated to take about 3 years to complete. 

Dunsmuir Park District Administrator Mike Rodriguez says, “This is another example of good collaboration and support from the community in conjunction with the recreation facility. I want to give a special thanks to Angel Gomez for taking the lead in this project and the City for hauling away all the debris. It is encouraging and exciting to see the partnership to make this project happen. It has been a pleasure working with Gomez and learning the history of the park.” 

A separate project currently being worked on in Tauhindauli Park is the concrete being replaced in the roadway of the southbound bridge that straddles the park. Caltrans says that the bridge itself is safe which was built in 1955. This project will take three years with the first 9 months just preparing the bridge and the next two years to repair and replace the roadway on the bridge. 

The southbound bridge was built similar to the original bridge that was constructed in 1915. The northbound bridge was built in the 1970s. 

For more about Tauhindauli Park, go to www.friend-of-tpark.org.

Soda Springs is still running in Tauhindauli Park. An inmate takes a break for lunch next to the plaque. 

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