Despite snow challenges, the Plumas National Forest recreational sites will be open for your Memorial weekend plans as promised. Sites were officially open yesterday at Lake Davis, Frenchman, Antelope, Sly Creek Reservoir recreation areas, and Spanish Creek, Hallsted, and Strawberry campgrounds.
However, with snow still covering the ground and impacting trails in higher-elevation recreational sites, Lakes Basin, Bucks Lake, and Little Grass Valley will remain closed.
In the Feather River Canyon, Queen Lily, North Fork, and Gansner Bar campgrounds remain closed due to slides along California Highway 70. While Hallsted Campground is accessible on Highway 70 from Quincy, a slide west of the campground affects access.
Ongoing culvert replacement and road repair projects continue on Antelope Lake Road between Genessee and the Dam. Yet, during the summer season, the road will be reopened on weekends between 5 p.m. Fridays to 6 a.m. on Mondays. For this extended weekend, the roadway will be opened today through Tuesday at 6 a.m.
Water systems throughout the sites are still being turned on and tested, and the forest service says you should plan to bring enough drinking water if the faucets are not potable. Strawberry Campground and Sly Creek water systems are under repair, and you must bring all water with you.
You are also reminded weather during this time of year can be unpredictable, with a risk of thunderstorms, and with snowpack runoff, lakes, and rivers are exceptionally cold. Be prepared for changes in weather and extra dry clothes on hand.
Be aware while visiting that road conditions remain challenging and potentially hazardous due to melting snow causing more runoff than usual. You must avoid damaging forest roads and trails, as repairs are time-consuming, resource-intensive, and illegal. You are asked to turn around if tires leave visible ruts on the road.
For further information on the Plumas National Forest, visit www.fs.usda.gov/plumas.
Safe drinking water is also a concern throughout the Modoc National Forest, as not all campgrounds will offer drinkable water this memorial day weekend. The Modoc National Forest says due to the abundance of snow and other circumstances, maintenance on water outlets has been delayed, and proper testing to clear the water for cooking or drinking has not been completed.
Across the Modoc forest, while water sources are opened up, you are asked to follow signage at the faucets that will let you know if the water is not potable.
Drinking non-potable water can lead to gastrointestinal issues from the bacteria contaminating the water.
Photo: Modoc National Forest