Burned Area Safety

A square yellow sign that reads "Closed. Do Not Enter. For Public Safety and to Protect Park Resources. By Order of Superintendent 36 CFR 1.5. Violators May Be Ticketed.
Please adhere to closures are indicated by CLOSED signs.

Adhere to Closures
to Protect Yourself and the Park

Some emergency closures are in place for facilities, infrastructure, and areas affected by the 2021 Dixie Fire. These closures help to reduce the risk to visitors and damage to park resources, or allow for post-fire recovery and repair. Please adhere to closures for your safety and to reduce the risk to first responders.

Adhering to Closures Helps to:

  • Limit further erosion
  • Protect plants of concern
  • Allow sensitive areas and species to recover
  • Limit the introduction of invasive species
 
Five stacked images top to bottom: burned area warning icon, a burned stump hole, a collapsed burned tree, a burned road sign, and a trailhead with burned trees in the background.
Be prepared for hazards in burn areas including hidden holes, fallen trees, burned signs, and fire-weakened trees and branches.

NPS

Be Alert in Open Burned Areas

Lassen Volcanic National Park limits hazard tree removal to developed areas such as the highway corridor, day use areas, and campgrounds. The park is prioritizing efforts to rehabilitate popular trails within the burn footprint as soon as possible. Be alert for and prepared to respond to hazards within open burned areas.

Falling/Fallen Trees or Limbs

Branches and trees may fall, whether dead or alive, and when there is no wind. Even a tree that looks robust may be at risk of falling because of damaged root systems or fire-loosened soils. Look up often and listen for cracks or snapping from roots, trunks, or branches. Take note of and do not stop under fire-weakened trees, snags, and branches. Travel through burned areas quickly to minimize your risk of these hazards.

Undefined or Unmarked Trails

Trails through burned areas may be difficult to follow and signs may have burned. Bring a map and pay attention.

Loose or Falling Rock

Burned soil can be loose when stripped of vegetation and the normal freeze-thaw cycle can further loosen rocks. Pass one person at a time through hillsides in burned areas or if you encounter a downed log or pile of fallen rocks, in case the material shifts.

Hidden Stump Holes

Hallow cavities are created when fire burns stumps or root structures. These holes may be invisible under ash or pine needles until you foot breaks through. Fire can smolder within these cavities for a long time after the rest of the fire is out. White ash may be a sign of lingering heat or a potential hole. Stay on trails in burned areas.

Increased Danger on Windy or Rainy Days

Don't go into a burn area if it's forecasted to be windy. Leave the area immediately if the wind picks up and there are hazards around you. Wind often accompanies rain. Burned soil is less absorbent and rain may create muddy and slippery conditions or flooding as drainages become clogged with trees, rocks, and debris.

Higher Than Normal Stream Flow

Snow may melt more quickly in burned areas resulting in higher than normal stream and creek levels. Most creeks and streams within the park do not pose a drowning hazard for adults, however unexpected wetness can quickly lead to hypothermia.

Unstable Shorelines

Fire can burn vegetation and soil that contribute to the stability of creek and lake shorelines. Try to spread out when crossing waterways within burned areas to reduce your chance of slipping in and to limit your impact to these fragile areas.

Burned Signs

Trail signs or tree markers may be missing if destroyed by fire. Bring a map and compass and pay close attention to your route.

Last updated: June 7, 2022

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