When the Camp Fire erupted in November of 2018, the entire town of Paradise was devastated by the deadliest and most destructive fire in California’s history. While there were plenty of difficult and tragic outcomes to the fire, it also burned up some amazing outdoors gems in the area, including the beloved flumes above the swimming pools of the Feather River.
The Flumes are skinny waterways used throughout history to transport lumber. More recently, they were used by outdoor enthusiasts to gain access to the Cable Pools along the Feather River near Paradise. Although the flumes have not been used over the past decades, they became a local staple for Butte County Residents. Here’s a quick reminder of the experience:
During the fire, the flumes were completely destroyed in some sections, making it difficult to gain access to the different swimming pools in the area:
At least part of the Flumes were taken out by the #CampFire flames. @rtovarg13 @c_alexander20 @joshcozine and I went down Dean Road in #ParadiseCA to try to see if the historical logging Flumes went #UpInFlumes @theorion_news This is what we saw: pic.twitter.com/Enf1v3nKNO— Alex Grant (@AlexThomasGrant) November 17, 2018
As time passes since the devastating Camp Fire, we’ve been receiving a lot of questions pertaining to the current state of the flumes. First and foremost, the area is closed to hikers and it’s very dangerous to attempt to maneuver around the area. Since there are much more important infrastructure rebuilds in the area, they have not been repaired, and it remains unclear what the plan is to restore or remove the flumes from the area.
While researching the current state of the flumes, we found a video showing that they still sit in disrepair in the wilderness of Butte County. Two guys went and explored the area (DO NO TRY THIS) and found the destruction still sitting in the wake of the Camp Fire:
The above video shows two people (stupidly) hiking around the area of the flumes, which is both trespassing and extremely dangerous. It also shows how the flumes sit broken, leaving the beautiful destination off-limits for visitors.
It’s a tough reminder that shows how the destruction of the Camp Fire is still felt throughout the community and that the beautiful flumes and subsequent swimming holes may never be experienced the way they were in the past.