For more than two weeks, national forests throughout California were closed due to fire concerns. Today, most of those forests reopen in Northern California with one exception.
On Thursday, all the forests in NorCal have reopened to the public with strict fire restrictions. The Eldorado National Forest will remain closed for the time being as the Caldor Fire continues to burn, with more than 219,000 acres burned in the forest to date. Closures will also stay in place for Los Padres, Angeles, San Bernardino, and Cleveland National Forests in Southern California.
Fire conditions have become less extreme in the past week, allowing for the reopening to occur a day earlier than anticipated.
“We are constantly evaluating weather and fire conditions in California, as well as regional and national firefighting resources available to us so that we can ensure the safety of the public and our firefighters,” said Regional Forester Jennifer Eberlien. “Some factors are more favorable now, which is why I decided to end the regional closure order. I want to thank the public and our partners for their patience and understanding during these challenging times.”
The move will officially reopen a large number of outdoor destinations in the state, including all of the areas of the Shasta-Trinity National Forest, Lassen National Forest and Tahoe National Forest. That being said, active fires are still causing closures throughout NorCal. If you’d like to visit any destination within a national forest, it’s best to check each forests website for up to date information.
We remind visitors to practice self-sufficiency during visits to National Forests, be aware of fire conditions in the area you are visiting and follow guidelines to prevent human-caused fire starts. Best practices include:
- Heed local information regarding trails and campgrounds, especially fire restrictions and closures. Generally, camp stoves with a shutoff valve will be allowed.
- Be proactive in your thinking about preventing fire starts. Smoking, parking in grass, flammable material, and other activities could cause fire ignition under dry conditions.
- COVID-19 remains a concern. Maintain at least six feet distance from others.
- Do not gather in groups and please follow the latest guidance from officials.
- Communicate with others as you pass. Alert trail users of your presence and step aside to let others pass. • Pack out your trash and leave with everything you bring in and use.
- All services may not be available, so please plan accordingly.