Monday, 27 May 2024

REGION: Yolla Bolly Middle Eel Wilderness reopens Sept. 15

MENDOCINO NATIONAL FOREST – After a busy season of forest fires closed the Yolla Bolly Middle Eel Wilderness, Mendocino and Six Rivers National Forest officials reported that the wilderness will reopen at 6 a.m. Monday, Sept. 15.


The wilderness area was closed June 26 due to wildland fire activity and in the interest of public safety. The closure was initially effective through the end of the 2008 fire season, which traditionally ends in October with the first rains.

Last month the Yolla Bolly Complex was contained after burning nearly 90,000 acres in two months, officials reported.

For visitor safety, the portion of the Wilderness on the Shasta-Trinity National Forest will remain closed until further notice due to the number of snags along trails.

The reopening means hunters and other recreational users will be able to enjoy the Yolla Bolly Middle Eel Wilderness this fall before the rain starts.

However, until there is significant rain, forest officials warn that we are still in an active fire season and this area has already been affected by fire. Visitors are asked to use caution in these areas and to respect the fire restrictions that are still in place.

Because there is inherent risk in any outdoor activity, visitors are cautioned that they should be aware of the challenges associated with recreating in wilderness areas, including:

  • Falling dead trees or tree branches – commonly known as snags – especially in windy conditions. Note that trees in burned areas may still look alive, but could be unstable after being burned.

  • Weak and unstable spots on the forest floor from burned out stumps and roots.

  • Slippery conditions from ash, needles, and other debris, particularly when wet.

  • Flash floods and mudslides in burned areas without vegetation.


Visitors should be prepared for changing weather conditions, including temperature fluctuations and the potential for precipitation, especially at higher elevations.

Campsites should be located away from burned areas, areas that may be subject to falling or rolling debris or trees, or beneath cliffs or steep slopes.

Visitors also are asked to help protect forest resources by remaining on designated roads. Motor Vehicle Use Maps are available for the Mendocino National Forest.

For more information, contact the Six Rivers National Forest Mad River Ranger District at 707-574-6233 or visit; the Mendocino National Forest Covelo Ranger

District at -707-983-6118, Grindstone Ranger District at 530-934-3316 or visit; or the Shasta-Trinity National Forest Supervisor’s Office at 530- 226-2500 or visit


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