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Contact: Josh Hoines, 530-242-3460
The National Park Service is pleased to announce the re-opening of the lower Crystal Creek area on Friday, September 20th at noon. This includes the Crystal Creek Water Ditch Trail, lower Crystal Creek Road, and access to Crystal Creek Falls. This marks the first access to a popular Whiskeytown waterfall following the devastating effects of the Carr Fire. The addition of these trails to those already open brings the total number of open trails at Whiskeytown to nine, and the total accessible trail mileage is now approximately 15 miles. The James K. Carr Trail to Whiskeytown Falls will remain closed pending the replacement of bridges destroyed during the Carr Fire. The work necessary to reach this momentous recovery milestone has been staggering. To date nearly 6000 hazard trees have been removed in developed areas and along roads. Approximately 550 trees were removed in the lower Crystal Creek area alone.
The Crystal Creek watershed as well as the lower slopes of Shasta Bally up to the WAPA power line is now open to public use including hunting. Hunters and other users are urged to use caution in traveling off trail, or by foot on the upper section of the Crystal Creek Road. The areas near (500ft on either side) Boulder Creek, Brandy Creek, Mill Creek and Paige Boulder remain closed to the public due to threat of debris flows.
As you plan your return to Crystal Creek, please expect changes in the post-Carr Fire environment. Superintendent Josh Hoines stated, “We are thrilled to invite you back to a popular Whiskeytown waterfall and additional trails, but please be cautious and vigilant about your personal safety. The park, landscape, and management have all changed following the Carr Fire.” Keep in mind that while thousands of trees have been removed, hazards still exist. Stay alert for falling trees, especially on windy days, and obey all closures. Shasta County is working with a contractor to replace and repair road facilities along the Crystal Creek Road, please drive carefully in this area.
Debris flows remain the highest threat to life, health, and safety in the wake of the fire and the potential for a debris flow increases during fall and winter thunderstorms. Safety is the top priority. For this reason, open areas could close at short notice at any time in the event of heavy rain. Other open trails in the park include Shasta Divide Nature Trail, Guardian Rock, Buck Hollow, Mule Mountain Pass, Shasta Mine Loop, Prospect, Clear Creek Canal, Oak Bottom Ditch, Old 299, Davis Gulch, and the lower portion of the Brandy Creek trail from JFK Memorial Drive to Brandy Creek Beach. On September 23, Brandy Creek Beach will move to fall hours: 9:00 AM - 6:00 PM daily. Brandy Creek Beach will close for the winter on November 1. JFK Memorial Drive remains open to Brandy Creek Marina and Dry Creek Campground.
The Whiskeytown visitor center is open daily from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Located just eight miles west of Redding at the intersection of Highway 299 and JFK Memorial Drive, the visitor center offers exhibits on the history and development of the Whiskeytown area, a self-guiding Junior Ranger booklet as well as information on camping, and other local information. Park entrance passes, books, maps, postcards and other publications and souvenirs can all be purchased at the visitor center. Your purchases help support park recovery, volunteers, and interpretive programs at Whiskeytown.
You can purchase weekly and annual Whiskeytown passes any time of the day, at home on your computer or on the go with your smart device, through www.yourpassnow.com and select Whiskeytown National Recreation Area from the drop-down menu to pay online. Whiskeytown weekly and annual passes may also be purchased through www.recreation.gov.
Last updated: September 20, 2019