Jessica Cejnar / Friday, March 27, 2020 @ 9:23 a.m. / Emergencies, Environment, Parks

COVID-19 Prompts Closure of Developed Recreation Sites in California Through April 30


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Forest Service is closing developed recreation sites such as campgrounds and picnic areas.

From a Thursday news release:

EUREKA, Calif. – The USDA Forest Service and the Six Rivers National Forest appreciate the public’s interest in outdoor recreation, particularly in light of current events. The Pacific Southwest Region of the Forest Service, in response to the recent statewide shelter-in-place order issued by the Governor of California, is joining the cause to aggressively mitigate the spread of COVID-19 by closing developed recreation sites on our national forests statewide.

Developed recreation sites refers to designated recreational areas that facilitate public use, such as campgrounds and picnic areas. Visit the forest’s website at or contact any Six Rivers National Forest office, leaving a voicemail or an email during regular business hours (Monday through Friday, 8AM to 4:30 PM) for additional information on closed areas:

·         Forest Supervisor’s Office, Eureka –

·         Gasquet Ranger District / Smith River National Recreation Area, Gasquet – (707) 457-3131

·         Orleans / Ukonom Ranger District, Orleans – (530) 627-3291

·         Lower Trinity Ranger District, Willow Creek – (530) 629-2118

·         Mad River Ranger District, Mad River – (707) 574-6233

Closures of developed recreation facilities are in effect until at least April 30, in an attempt to avoid people congregating and promote social distancing, staying more than six feet apart.

While designated recreation sites will be closed, the general forest area, including an extensive trail system, will remain open and available to the public. Hiking and walking outdoors are widely considered beneficial to maintaining one’s health. It is the intent of the USDA Forest Service to maintain trail access to the extent practicable.

Please keep health, safety and the environment in mind when visiting national forests. Your personal responsibility is critical to ensuring public safety and preventing further restrictions. We ask that you consider whether your personal participation in outdoor recreation at this time would pose an unnecessary risk to others as we all work together to flatten the curve and slow the spread of COVID-19.

We appreciate your cooperation in keeping our national forests safe and healthy for everyone’s use.


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