Category Archives: News Items

Winter Weather Warning

photo credit Nick Lanham

STAY SAFE!
RESCUES IN THE WILDERNESS CAN BE AVOIDED.
FOLLOW A FEW SIMPLE RULES

Stay together – do not leave your group,

Be prepared –  Carry Flashlight, Map, Food,  Water and Clothing

Be trail aware – Watch your surroundings, the trail looks different when you are coming back down. Turn around take a look, establish points of reference, a mountain top you can see or a particular rock formation, that will take you home. TAKE A MAP.  Many people are lost leaving the San Gorgonio Summit because they miss the trail going back to Vivian. Instead they end up miles from where they should be.  Watch for trail junctions, don’t just follow your feet without looking up.

Leave your itinerary –Make sure you tell someone where you are planning to go and when you’ll be back.

Winter conditions  – Be prepared for all weather conditions. Days change quickly from pleasant to snow and ice. Take warm clothing and equipment so you can stay overnight should you have to.  Days are short and nights are very cold.  Must have crampons/and Alpine boots, trails are iced and very dangerous.

SGWA Yearbook 2019!

Another successful summer season for SGWA volunteers. We celebrated with our annual awards program and potluck. The yearbook is a great way to remember all the things that happened, from our friendly faces at Mill Creek Ranger Station to the valiant trail crews. Please take a look at the 2019 SGWA Yearbook, we’re very proud to have such great volunteers working for the forest.

If you’d like to work with us, our annual training is usually a week or two before Memorial Day each May. There will be announcements here and on our Facebook page.

We don’t take the winter off either – so we’ll be seeing you out on the trail or in the office!

Volunteer Sharon Philpot “infra-ing” the trail. Photo credit Rex Philpot.

FR 1N05 to Fish Creek now open

Good news! Forest Road 1N05, long closed due to the Lake Fire, has now been reopened. You can now travel to Aspen Grove, Fish Creek Trailhead, and Mission Springs for day hiking. However, overnight camping at Fish Creek Camp and Fish Creek Saddle is still not available. If you have any questions please call Mill Creek Ranger Station at (909) 382-2882

Elevated Fire Restrictions

The Forest Service has issued a Forest Order detailing restrictions on campfires, smoking, and welding within the San Bernardino National Forest. Please visit the link above.

In addition, due to the dry conditions, a new Forest Order has closed the following target shooting areas through Dec 31st:

  1. 1N09 off Highway 330 near Highland/San Bernardino (was already closed due to road damage after the Feb. 14 winter storm)
  2. Bee Canyon off Highway 74 near Hemet (was already closed due to road damage after the Feb. 14 winter storm)
  3. Lightning Gulch in the Barton Flats area
  4. Arrastre to the east of Big Bear
  5. Big Pine Flats to the north of Big Bear



2019 Summer season ends

Labor Day marks the end of the Summer season at the Mill Creek Visitor center. Business hours for the Mill Creek Visitor Center beginning Saturday Sept 7th until Memorial Day 2020 will be:

Thursday – Monday, 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM
Office is closed Tuesday and Wednesday

Contact us at Mill Creek during those days and hours with any questions.

Barton Flats Visitor Center Open

Barton Flats Visitor Center has been cleared of the winter storm debris and will be open for business starting July 5. Stop by and see us!

Off-Trail Hiking Prohibited at Big Falls

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Zach Behrens, 909-382-2788

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. — An off-trail area around one of Southern California’s tallest waterfalls will be closed to the public beginning on the 4th of July, San Bernardino National Forest officials announced today. Visitors will still be able to hike the Big Falls Trail (1E13) to a waterfall overlook, but areas beyond the railing will be closed due to safety.

“There have been too many search and rescues in this area in the past,” said Joe Rechsteiner, the district ranger for the Front Country Ranger District. “We want to make sure the public enjoys this beautiful spot while staying safe. Some of rocks in Falls Creek are deceivingly slippery.”

Search and rescues by partners at San Bernardino County Fire and sheriff’s deputies are sometimes so frequent in this area that one rock in particular is known to locals as “Blood Rock.” A slip on it has sent multiple people tumbling down the middle fall, often prompting injury and rescue by helicopter. The closure will be enacted by a forest order (and will last through May 24, 2020, unless rescinded earlier.

05-12-53-19-03-Upper-Big-Falls_Order

SGWA’s May Newsletter now available

Click here to read all about it: the Wild Winter, Featured Volunteer, and more!

Storm Damage to Forest Road 1N45 (Barton Flats)

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. — After assessing storm damage along Forest Road 1N45 (Santa Ana River Rd.), officials with San Bernardino National Forest have issued a Forest Order closing the route between Highway 38 and Glass Road in the Barton Flats area of the San Bernardino Mountains. The damage includes sink holes, mud and rock slides, cracked pavement, undercut pavement, sloughing and fallen trees.

Repairing 1N45 is another priority project for the forest. Damage assessments are continuing and staff hope repair work will begin within the next month, weather permitting.

The Forest Order begins today, March 16, 2019. It expires on March 15, 2020, but will be lifted earlier, once necessary repairs are completed. Special use permit holders, such as recreational cabin owners and organization camps, are exempt from this order.

For more information on the 1N45 road closure, call the Mountaintop Ranger District at 909-382-2790.

For more information on road damages throughout the forest caused by February 2019 storms, visit InciWeb.

Storm Damage to Forest Road 1N09

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. — After assessing storm damage along Forest Road 1N09 (locally pronounced with the letter “O”), officials with San Bernardino National Forest have issued a forest order closing about 22 miles of the route between Highway 330 and Seven Oaks Road in the San Bernardino Mountains. The damage includes sink holes, mud and rock slides, cracked pavement, undercut pavement, sloughing and fallen trees.

“Repairing 1N09 is a priority project for the forest,” said the forest’s Deputy Fire Chief Mike Nobles. “Not only is it a key road for suppression during a wildfire, but it’s very popular with the recreating public. Work has already begun to address the numerous issues along the artery.”

In addition to his role as the forest’s deputy fire chief, Nobles has been appointed as the incident commander for an incident response team to address storm damage throughout the forest. More road closures by forest orders are expected in the coming weeks.

The forest order for 1N09 begins today, March 13, 2019. It technically expires on March 13, 2020, but will be lifted once repairs are concluded, which is currently anticipated by early September at the latest.

For more information, call the Front Country Ranger District at 909-382-2851.