[image] Ojai Hwy 33 Fall Colors

Fall Color on the Ojai Ranger District  - Hwy 33


Popular Recreation Activities

Hiking Camping OHV Riding Other recreation activities.

We have lots more information about recreation opportunities across the forest!

Upper Santa Ynez Recreation Area Closure

[image] Upper Santa Ynez Recreation closureWinter storms took their toll on Forest roads in the first few months of 2017. On the Santa Barbara Ranger District, the road into Pendola is closed as a result of a cribwall that failed one-third of a mile below where the pavement ends on East Camino Cielo. A temporary gate was installed at the end of the pavement to restrict motorized traffic into Pendola. The Forest has applied for emergency funding through the Federal Highway Administration to help with the repair work. Until we can secure the necessary funding and get the road shored up, the road into Pendola will remain closed. Our apologies for the inconvenience, and our thanks for your understanding.

Monterey Ranger District—Soberanes Fire Closure Information

The Soberanes Fire is now one-hundred percent contained and controlled. The fire closure order that went into effect September 3 for the entire Monterey Ranger District has been reduced to the fire scar. This current closure will help ensure that members of the public are not injured within the fire perimeter, allow for the scorched landscape to begin the rehabilitation process, and help reduce the potential for another human-caused fire. The southern portion of the Monterey Ranger District, including the Silver Peak Wilderness, is now open to the public. For more information, please contact the Monterey Ranger District at (831) 385-5434. Law enforcement capacity is actively enforcing the order.

Los Padres Partners with Parks Management Co. to Manage Forest Recreation Sites

[image] Kirk Creek CampgroundOn November 1, 2016, a new concessionaire Special Use Permit (SUP) was issued to Parks Management Company (PMC) for campground and recreation site operations following a competitive bidding process.

Los Padres has 125 developed campgrounds, day-use sites, and trailheads. Under the recently expired SUP, 34 sites were managed under concession. The new 10-year SUP includes 18 additional recreation sites that previously required an Adventure Pass or other access pass. Overall, 52 sites will be managed by PMC under a new fee structure, 23 sites will still require a Recreation Pass, and 50 remain free of charge.


YCC Interns Celebrate Successful Summer on Los Padres

Youth Conservation Corps Summer Project

This summer, four Generation Green high school interns and their crew leader spent eight weeks on Los Padres National Forest working on various projects for the Engineering Staff. The Youth Conservation Corps helped to make this internship financially viable for the students and crew leader with the goal of providing meaningful work experiences on public lands to work and learn alongside federal employees. The team focused on engineering management and environmental education, which is required under YCC guidelines.

Loss of Los Padres National Forest Fire Chief Gary Helming

Gary Helming

It is with great sadness that the Los Padres National Forest announces the death of Santa Lucia District Batallion Chief Gary Helming, who was killed in a vehicle collision early this morning while returning home from a fire assignment on the Railroad Fire in the Sierra NF. 

He began working for the Forest Service 22 years ago as a seasonal firefighter. He worked for the BLM and the National Park Service before returning to the Forest Service again in 2013. He was a batallion chief stationed in Santa Maria, California.

“Our hearts go out to Gary’s family, the Forest Service and the wildland fire community – he exemplified the highest standards of honor and professionalism,” said Los Padres Deputy Forest Supervisor Ken Heffner. “Gary  was a tremendous leader, partner and thoughtful person who engaged with everyone. He will be greatly missed.”

Helming is survived by his wife, three children and their family.

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Forest Recreation Information Brochures and Publications

[image} Kirk Creek Campground - Monterrey Ranger District

Information on recreational opportunities on the Los Padres National Forest.

Los Padres NF Wins Award for Women In Wildland Fire Training

A line of women dressed in firefighting gear stand in a field with shovels and hoes

In 2014 the Los Padres National Forest received a Washington Office diversity grant to fund a project designed to engage and recruit under-represented groups into the Fire Program.