Halt, hikers and campers: Closures extended at 4 national forests ringing L.A.

·2 min read
MOUNT LAGUNA, CA - APRIL 2, 2021: Stanford students Sammy Potter, left, and Jackson Parell hike in the Cleveland National Forest 10 days into their 342 mile hike along the Pacific Crest Trail from the Cajon Pass to the Mexican border town of Campo, CA, the PCT Southern Terminus on April 2, 2021 in Mount Laguna, California.They are hoping to complete the nearly 8,000 mile Triple Crown hike in one calendar year, the Appalachian Trail, Continental Divide and Pacific Crest Trail.(Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)
The four national forests in Southern California, closed Aug. 31 by authorities hoping to prevent fires, will remain off limits through at least Sept. 22. These hikers were walking the Pacific Crest Trail near Mt. Laguna in Cleveland National Forest in early April. (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)

The four national forests that surround Los Angeles — Los Padres, Angeles, San Bernardino and Cleveland — will remain closed at least through Sept. 22 as a measure to prevent fires, according to a Forest Service order posted Tuesday.

That adds at least five days to an earlier order to shut those and other California national forests from Aug. 31 through Sept. 17.

The order said the extended closures are "due to local weather and fire factors, as well as a temporary strain on firefighting resources supporting large fires in other areas of the state."

Selected sites near ongoing wildfires, such as Eldorado National Forest near the Caldor fire in Northern California, will remain closed too.

However, some forests will reopen Wednesday, two days earlier than the original closure order called for.

Anyone with hiking or camping plans should, before departing, check the status of the national forest you plan to visit.

Among the fire-related factors behind Tuesday's announcement:

  • Last week, lightning strikes touched off two fires that have shut Sequoia National Park and now threaten giant sequoias in the Giant Forest. The KNP Complex fire grew fivefold this week to almost 6,000 acres.

  • Farther north, the Dixie fire, on the brink of 1 million acres, devoured almost half of Lassen Volcanic National Park, whose landscape was formed by explosive eruptions. It's 75% contained.

  • The small but stubborn Route fire in Castaic in parts of the Angeles National Forest swallowed around 500 acres. As of Tuesday, it was 63% contained.

Check out updates at latimes.com/fires and the L.A. Times wildfire map.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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