July 4th week recreation on Plumas National Forest  

Pumas National Forest provided an update on recreation opportunities over the 4th of July weekend.

According to a statement from the PNF, the week of July 4th includes numerous festivals and celebrations in and around the Plumas National Forest, as well as drawing area residents and visitors to recreation sites across the Forest.

Nearly all recreation sites are expected to be open for the 2024 season will be open by Thursday, July 4.

At Little Grass Valley Reservoir near La Porte on the Feather River Ranger District, recreation sites on the Wyandotte peninsula are open, as well as Black Rock and Horse Camp campgrounds. Red Feather, Little Beaver and Running Deer are expected to be open July 4.

For the sites at Little Grass Valley Reservoir, recreation staff are asking that campers and site visitors conserve the limited water resources available. This includes bringing water from home, ensuring that faucets are completely turned off and reporting any leaks or broken plumbing to recreation employees.

On the Mount Hough Ranger District, Gansner Bar Campground in the Feather River Canyon is still closed, but expected to open soon. At Bucks Lake, sites are open, except for Hutchins Group Camp. The campground will remain closed until hazard trees are removed and the water system repaired. Sundew Campground does not have water and campers should come prepared. At both North Fork and Queen Lily campgrounds, water is not potable.

On the Beckwourth Ranger District, there is potable water at Lake Davis and Frenchman Lake, with the exception of Chilcoot Campground, where the water is not potable. Visitors to Chilcoot Campground should come prepared with drinking water. All docks are in the water at the two popular recreation sites.

At Gold Lake, the boat dock is still being worked on. As a reminder, Gold Lake Campground is now first come, first served, and Gold Lake 4×4 Camp is now requiring reservations at least three days in advance on Recreation.gov.

Reservations for Gold Lake 4×4 Camp can be made up to 30 days in advance online or by calling (877) 444-6777. The reservation phone number is staffed daily 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Recreation.gov charges an $8 service charge for online reservations, $9 for phone reservations. Service charges are also applied for cancellations, so visitors are asked to be sure of their plans.

Visitors to Gold Lake 4×4 Camp are also expected to be responsible for human waste disposal when recreating at this site, bringing and using approved systems. This includes waste kits and Waste Alleviation and Gelling bags that contain a drying agent, can be sealed and disposed of in a dumpster or trash at home. These systems can be purchased at a variety outdoor stores and online.

The Plumas National Forest is currently in Stage 1 Fire Restrictions. Campfires are only allowed in established campfire rings in specific designated recreation sites listed in Exhibit A of the closure order.

California Campfire Permit holders can use portable campfire pits, stoves or lanterns that use gas, kerosene, jellied petroleum or pressurized liquid fuel as long as it has a working shut-off valve and is used in an area that is at least 3 feet from any flammable materials.

Additionally, internal combustion engines, such as vehicles and generators, may only be used on designated roads and trails.  Boat engines are exempt.

Fireworks are prohibited on all federal public lands, including the Plumas National Forest. This includes sparklers, poppers and other small devices.

“Fire danger is increasing along with the temperatures this week and we need the public to use extreme caution this week,” said Plumas National Forest Assistant Fire Management Officer Mitch Wilson. “This includes no fireworks of any kind, following the Stage 1 Fire Restrictions, and if you are in a site allowing campfires, ensure they are dead out and cold to the touch.”

Trailer chains should be secured so that they are not dragging on the pavement and tires should be properly inflated. Spark arresters should be functioning properly on motorized equipment, including off-highway vehicles, generators and chainsaws.

“For the past two years, we have been extremely fortunate to not have a sizeable wildfire, but we are looking at hot weather and possible Red Flag Warnings in the coming weeks,” said Wilson. “We appreciate everyone’s cooperation and vigilance in being careful and preventing human-caused wildfires.”

Even with the hot weather, it’s advised to be prepared for changing conditions and cooler temperatures at night. Being prepared with layered clothing, plenty of food and water, good footwear and the right gear is highly recommended.

It’s always good for any forest adventure to make sure in addition to the right supplies that you let someone know where you are going, when you plan to be back and start with a full tank of gas.

For more information on the Plumas National Forest, visit fs.usda.gov/plumas, follow the forest on Twitter @USFSPlumas or on Facebook at facebook.com/USFSPlumas.