QUINCY, CA — The Plumas National Forest has modified Forest Closure Order 05-11-00-21-06 to reopen the Middle Fork of the Feather River to recreational use.
Campgrounds, trailheads and two bridges in the area remain closed due to ongoing hazards from the North Complex Fire that burned in the area in 2020.
The current closure is referenced as Order Number 05-11-03-22-01 and is in place until conditions allow or March 29, 2024, whichever occurs first. There will be public notifications when the closure order is lifted.
The closure order is for public and employee safety as assessments and work continues to repair and restore access to recreation sites affected by the fire.
The closure covers Butte Bar, Cleghorn Bar, Feather Falls, Hanson Bar, Hartman Bar, South Hartman Bar, Little North Fork, Rogers Cow Camp, South Branch and Stag Point campgrounds; Bald Rock (Dome), Big Bald Rock, Cleghorn Bar, Hanson Bar, Feather Falls, Little North Fork, Mountain House, North Hartman Bar, Sky High, South Hartman Bar and Stag Point trailheads; and Toland Creek and Frasier Creek bridges. Entering or using the developed recreation sites or withing 1,000 feet of the two bridges is prohibited.
Feather River Ranger District employees are working on repairs, reconstruction and risk-mitigation projects associated with the fire damage. Work in the area has taken longer than expected due to analysis needs, acquiring funding and a shorter season to implement repairs due to elevation, which limits construction activities to summer and fall months.
“The Middle Fork of the Feather River as an important recreation site, especially as seasonal water flow in the spring provide great conditions for whitewater rafting and kayaking,” said Plumas Forest Supervisor Chris Carlton. “While work on facilities like campgrounds and trails continues, including recreation sites along the river, the river corridor is available for recreational use.”
Area residents and visitors planning to float the Middle Fork of the Feather River are asked to use caution, especially along the shoreline. There are still hazards in the burn area, including dead trees that can fall with little to no notice, unstable slopes and potential rock fall.
“We want everyone to have a safe and positive recreation experience on the Plumas National Forest and recognize the risks of recreating in areas that have burned over the past few years, especially in our scenic canyons,” said Carlton.
Violations of the closure order are punishable of a fine of not more than $5,000 for an individual or $10,000 for an organization, or imprisonment of not more than 6 months or both. For more information on the Plumas National Forest, visit www.fs.usda.gov/plumas, follow the forest on Twitter @USFSPlumas or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/USFSPlumas.