July 15, 2022

Portions of Big Basin Redwoods State Park Reopen Following Devastating Fire

Big Basin Redwoods State Park – California’s oldest – is now accepting day-use-only reservations for public access to a small area of the fire-damaged park. Big Basin has been closed to the public since the CZU Lightning Complex Fire in August 2020, when flames engulfed more than 97 percent of the park, destroying approximately 18,000 acres. The park is still without electricity, water, flush toilets, phone service, or buildings. Although services will be limited, visitors will be able to explore the Redwood Loop and access about 18 miles of fire roads near the historic park core. While trees such as Douglas firs were nearly eliminated from the park, a majority of the redwoods have survived the fire damage. Access to popular backcountry trails such as the Skyline to the Sea and access to Berry Creek Falls are on the more distant horizon. The lands are known today as Big Basin Redwoods State Park were originally the homelands of the Quiroste and Cotoni tribes, ancestral relatives of today’s Amah Mutsun Tribal Band and the Muwekma Ohlone Tribe.  Prior to the CZU Fire, the park’s trails served hikers and equestrians –  linking Big Basin to Castle Rock State Park and the eastern reaches of the Santa Cruz range — and featured hundreds of campsites.

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