Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway is CLOSED due to hazardous road conditions.
Inclement weather often creates unsafe road conditions. Currently, there is a "glaze" of transparent ice on sections of the road. The Parkway will reopen as soon as State law enforcement officers deem it safe to travel upon.
Most campgrounds remain OPEN. Sites are available on first-come, first-served basis.
Jed Smith, Elk Prairie, Gold Bluffs Beach campgrounds are OPEN. All sites are available on first-come, first-served basis. Mill Creek Campground is CLOSED and will reopen May 16, 2014. More »
Gravel Access Road CLOSED.
Gravel access road to the Tall Trees trailhead is closed until further notice. Tall Trees Trail and Grove are still open. The easiest way to access this area is by hiking the Redwood Creek Trail, which is 8 miles one way.
Fall Prescribed Fire Activities in the Bald Hills
Contact: John McClelland, 707-465-7732
Redwood National and State Parks will conduct a series of prescribed burns this fall in the prairies and oak woodlands of the Bald Hills east of Orick. The prescribed fire season in the parks begins in late September or early October as weather conditions permit. Fires could start as early as Friday, September 28.
This year fire will be used as a management tool in four specific burn units in the Bald Hills: Upper Elk Camp Prairie, Williams Ridge, Eastside Prairie, and Childs Hill Prairie. All four units combined total 823 acres.
For thousands of years, Yurok, Tolowa, Chilula, and Hupa people managed prairies and oak woodlands, and some coastal areas that are now within the parks with periodic fire to keep them open. Intentional burning provided grazing and hunting areas for elk and deer, maintained important resources like tanoak trees and various basket weaving materials, kept trail and travel corridors open, and lessened the prevalence of parasites like ticks in the prairies. Early settlers who homesteaded the prairies continued the practice of broadcast burning until it was outlawed by the state in the 1930s. Since then, many of the prairies and oak woodlands have become encroached with Douglas fir and other conifers which can eventually eliminate these important plant communities.
The parks' 2010 Fire Management Plan provides for the use of fire to restore natural and cultural processes, manage exotic plants and conifers encroaching into prairie and oak woodland plant communities, and to interpret and educate the public about the role of fire in the parks. The parks have successfully used prescribed fires to achieve these objectives since the early 1980's.
If you are in the parks over the next couple of months, there will likely be additional activity and equipment on and near Bald Hills Road. Smoke may linger on the roadways and traffic control may be in place. Please be cautious for your safety as well as those working on the prescribed burns.
For further information, please contact John McClelland at (707) 465-7732.
This News Release can also be viewed, downloaded, and/or printed in PDF format (122 KB).
Did You Know?
Common in the redwood forest, ravens often scavenge food scraps found in campgrounds. Once they find an easy food source, they constantly fly over that area in search of food. Unfortunately, they may come across a marbled murrelet nest and eat the egg or chick! Please store all food items properly.