The History Of Cascadel Road
Cascadel Road’s Importance










The History Of Cascadel Road

The road today named Cascadel Road of North Fork Madera County California travels from Mammoth Pool Rd 225 northeasterly through the Cascadel Woods subdivision onto Forest Service managed public land and back out to Mammoth Pool Road. At one time this was the main and only road to Hogue Ranch and onward. Prior to that this was a millennium old Indian trail.

Today’s Cascadel Woods Subdivision proper lies almost entirely within the south half of Section 16 Township 8S Range 23E MDB&M. Up until the late fifties Cascadel Road was the only road through Cascadel. At that time the subdivision was created along with its various additional roads.

Cascadel Road was built in 1877 before the Sections had been surveyed but after the Townships were laid out and before the formation of Madera County in 1893 had occurred. The road was built as was common on established Indian trails. Cascadel Road was granted to Fresno County in 1888 for a public road by one George Wagner at which time the Section survey had been completed and the road, the only road through the South half of Section Sixteen the area now known as Cascadel, was described as the right of way for a public road, a strip of land sixty feet wide through the south half of Section 16 Township 8S Range 23E MDB&M. This description referenced a road survey done in May 1888 by one JG Shepard. (The whereabouts of the survey are unknown.) This description remains largely unchanged throughout the brief chain of title.

When Madera County was formed in 1893 the new county inherited Cascadel Road. Cascadel Road didn’t change title until Madera County quit all claims to the deed granting them to Cascadel Ranch Properties in 1967, nearly ten years after the first subdivision maps were drawn. Two months after that Cascadel Ranch Properties dedicated Cascadel Road to public street use and offered it to Madera County.

Before that in 1956 Fresno County quit all claims to the road granting them to Cascadel Ranch Properties. This was odd considering Fresno County had no claims to the road from 1893 onward. The Ranch tried to create an exclusive private community, failed, apparently decided to attempt to secure Madera County maintenance for the road still owned by Madera County so they then cleared the title by quitting all claims back to Fresno County in 1967, a required formality to clear the title though they held no claim to the road at that time. Then Cascadel Ranch secured claim to the road by convincing Madera County to quit all claims to the road and grant them to Cascadel Ranch which promptly dedicated the road to public street use and offered it to Madera County. It didn’t work. Madera County to this day has refused to maintain Cascadel Road, which remains irrevocably dedicated to public use.

Cascadel Road through Section 16 is described with meets and bounds on various recorded surveyor’s parcel maps in almost its entirety. One portion of Cascadel Road, where it passes though Lot 1 Subdivision 4 is not so described. The 1967 Offer-Of-Dedication references Parcel Maps 43 and 44 which were not recorded and are unavailable. The portion that passes through Lot 1 of Subdivision 4 is not shown with meets and bounds on any recorded surveyor’s parcel map located to date. The title to Lot 1 borrows the almost verbatim description of Cascadel Road that started in 1888 and excepts the road right of way from Lot 1. In other words, a sixty-foot wide strip of land is not part of the parcel. In the absence of meets and bounds the most compelling evidence of a road’s location is the road’s actual physical location. Cascadel Road does indeed pass through Lot 1. A party who is planning to block Cascadel Road currently owns Lot 1.

The Cascadel Woods Property Owners Association has been using and maintaining Cascadel Road for some forty odd years, by necessity as Madera County does not maintain the road and Cascadel Road is absolutely critical to the fire and life safety of our members as well as the sole route across Whiskey Creek for large equipment and vehicles. Other property owners performed maintenance as well.

In an effort to secure some sort of written validation of the free open and public nature of Cascadel Road as well as the Association’s right to maintain Cascadel Road, the Association is asking the Madera County Board of Supervisors to resolve to accept the 1967 Offer-Of-Dedication recorded in 1969 with the stipulation that Madera County will not perform maintenance and is under no obligation to perform maintenance but rather designates the Cascadel Woods Property Owners Association for maintenance of Cascadel Road. Thence the Association would have stronger clearer documentation to the effect that Cascadel Road is dedicated to public use and maintained by the Association and under the jurisdiction of the RMA Road Department.

compiled by Mark Stamas