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Take The Rough Road To Paradise Tour

Now´s your chance to get your SUV off the pavement and drive it where it was meant to be – on the “rough road to paradise.”

The U.S. Forest Service is sponsoring a “Sierra Grandstand Drive Tour” Friday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The tour offers participants breath-taking views of the Sierra as well as a first hand look at forest management in action.

Anyone with an SUV or other high clearance vehicle is invited to take the guided, 13-mile rocky, dusty and scenic off-road adventure through the Stanislaus National Forest back county in the Mi-Wok Ranger District.

Mi-Wok Ranger Ann Denton says the typical passenger car is not recommended, since the roads the tour travels over are unimproved and rugged.

Participants will discover miles of undulating ridge lines with magnificent views of the wilderness peaks, geologic formations, old forests and examples of former logging methods, replanting, mechanical thinning, prescribed burning and other management practices.

Forest Service volunteers will be stationed at several points along the tour to talk about places of interest and local history. At the last stop, tour participants can take a short, guided hike or picnic at Artist Point, enjoying a 360-degree view from the coastal range to the High Sierra.

Call the Mi-Wok Ranger district office for reservations or more information. That number is (209) 586-3234, ext. 614.