Western States Pioneer Express Recreation Trail

MODERATE 55 reviews

Western States Pioneer Express Recreation Trail is a 8.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Auburn, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

8.8 miles 1545 feet Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

rails trails

trail running

walking

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

Enjoy views of the Middle Fork American River Canyon on this easy walk which includes a historic arched cement bridge and a waterfall. This short walk brings you up to and then across the Mountain Quarries RailRoad Bridge, which was the longest concrete arch railroad bridge in the world when it was built in 1912. Enjoy great views of the Middle Fork American River Canyon and marvel at what was a fantastic feat of construction for its time. The triple span bridge was built by the Mountain Quarries Company and the Pacific Portland Cement Company for the purpose of hauling limestone from the nearby quarry to Auburn, 7 miles away. Trains ran across the bridge down to the quarry 4 times daily until the quarry was abandoned. In 1942 the tracks were pulled out for scrap metal for WWII. You might also hear the bridge called the "No Hands Bridge". This is a throwback from the early years of the Tevis Cup Trail Ride, an equestrian race that goes from Squaw Valley in Tahoe to Auburn. Challenged by onlookers who noted the bridge's former lack of guard-rails, one of the riders, Ina Robinson, would drop her reins and go across "No-Hands". The bridge now does have metal guard rails, but the name has stuck with it.

hiking
3 days ago

Loved it! We had so much fun on this trail and our kids did great.

hiking
9 days ago

9 days ago

Great trail. Well maintained. Plenty of parking at trail head. We parked at Auburn staging area for access to the trail. Plenty of marking at the trail splits. The hike back up was a true workout. Especially when we saw the sign that it was 30 degree grade. Would definitely do this trail again.

10 days ago

hiking
16 days ago

17 days ago

This is a good trail considering how close it is to civilization. Cell service the whole time, but still very pretty and lots of choices of paths to take. waterfalls and rivers and bridges to see make this a trail I will travel again.

26 days ago

first real hike since losing 50lbs, was FANTASTIC!! Did NOT stay on path, did a lot of riverside rock climbing then ran all the way back from dam. Felt GREAT and got awesome pics of the green rushing water

1 month ago

1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

lovely

hiking
1 month ago

2 months ago

Great trail system with many options. Light rain & lots of mud today, but glorious sounds from all the water.

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike beautiful views. Have to walk through water s few times but it's nice.

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike beautiful views. Have to walk through water s few times but it's nice.

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike beautiful views. Have to walk through water s few times but it's nice.

3 months ago

4 months ago

Amazing!!

4 months ago

walking
4 months ago

There are three entrances to this trail. Absolutely loved the trail with the waterfall. Definitely not kid friendly...