Vivian Creek Trail Backpacking

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    • #4053
      cadillacjaxon
      Participant

      So I’ve got a million dollar question in this time of Covid…what are your opinions on the stay at home directive in relation to coming out for a one night backpacking trip up Vivian Creek Trail, spending the night at High Creek Camp? Context – I got my permit for the overnight trip back in February (90 days out from the planned trip date), as I do every year, so I am not just now looking for a place to get away to, or being spontaneous. I do this trip with some friends at the end of every May. I know that the stay at home order does not explicitly restrict me from recreating outside, provided that we follow social distancing guidelines, and even camping is now listed as an acceptable activity by the USFS as of May 9th. BUT, Is continuing on this trip the responsible thing to do since it is not truly “local” for me (coming from San Diego)?

    • #4054
      cadillacjaxon
      Participant

      Correction – it was the state health code stay at home order that listed camping as an approved activity as of May 9th. The USFS did just today open up some established campsites.

    • #4055
      Tin Cup
      Participant

      You’ll be fine . There are all sorts of folks out playing in mill creek , day hiking and over nighting . 5 of us just  got back this past weekend from an over at dobbs camp. Get out and hike . State parks are still closed to over night Though from what I understand.

    • #4059
      SocalJim
      Participant

      I live in the San Diego area and am planning an overnight trip to SG soon. I will have minimal contact with locals so little chance that they or I pose a risk to each other. Since the great majority of backcountry use is dispersed and doesn’t routinely entail high risk, I actually feel that the state and feds are being awful slow and conservative in reopening backcountry use. I’m 67, so I take the treat of COVID seriously. Hence, I visit stores as little as possible, but get out and hike as much as I can where I can.

    • #4061
      cadillacjaxon
      Participant

      Thank you both for your input!

    • #4063
      Ranger Lon
      Participant

      SBNF never closed the trails, only the developed campgrounds and picnic areas. Dispersed and wilderness camping have been available all year.

      Whether overnight is advisable given Covid concerns is another question. State Parks may be restricted, but the San Bernardino National Forest is not a State Park.

      Many of the SGWA volunteers are wary of going out in the Wilderness right now, but some have been doing personal hikes and overnights. You have seen their posts here and on our Facebook page.

      My best advice for those who want to get out in the back country safely, is this: Go on the weekdays (Monday – Thursday) if you can. Weekends are going to be very busy everywhere on the mountains from now until October (and until the next snow comes in.) Maybe this is a good opportunity to check out some of the lesser used camp areas that will not have everyone and their cousins trying to get in there.

      If you were hoping to go on Memorial Day weekend, I won’t say give it up, but if you look at our availability calendar, you’ll see an ever decreasing list of camps that are not already full. The names that were removed from the list all have quite a few people planning to go.

      This year might be a good one to miss the San Gorgonio Wilderness, but consider other areas outside of the wilderness where there may be fewer people?? Just a thought.

      Hope that helps.

      • #4065
        cadillacjaxon
        Participant

        Thanks for the helpful comment, Ranger Lon. I have a permit for the Saturday the 30th, after Memorial Day weekend (did this to avoid what I know would be the busiest weekend) but I will carefully discuss all our options with my trip mates and try to make the most informed and responsible decision we can.

    • #4067
      MikeH
      Participant

      I just came back from a hike to Fish Creek Saddle (trip report currently awaiting approval).

      If the amount of cars parked alongside the 38 near Thurman Flats and all along the creek are any indication of how busy this season is going to be, I may take up scrapbooking.

    • #4092
      Tin Cup
      Participant

      MikeH , as soon as unemployment runs out we’ll see less folks out . People are at home with money and nothing to do . If I was unemployed and was getting the  cash people are getting I would be spending every night in the woods . If you trade in your pack for some scissors and paper let me know I will buy gear !

    • #4093
      MikeH
      Participant

      I hear you, TC.  My employees are making the same or more collecting unemployment (plus the Fed bonus).  Very little incentive to come back to work…. for now.

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