Stay Safe in Burned Areas

Rocks, loose soils, and trees fall downslope onto a winding, paved road.
Rocks, loose soils, and trees fall downslope onto the Generals Highway after the KNP Complex Fire. NPS Photo

Watch for falling trees.
Branches and trees may fall, whether dead or alive, and when there is no wind. Keep eyes and ears open. Listen for cracks or snapping from roots, trunks, or branches. Don't linger under dead, cracked, broken, or hanging branches. Avoid spending any time under burned trees.

Don't enter closed areas.
Check at trailheads for information about potential hazards or closures. There are identified risks in these areas, including burned bridges, hazard trees, and sections of trail that are unstable due to erosion. Many of these hazards may be hard to spot.

Drive carefully.
Rocks, debris, and even downed trees may be present on roads at any time. Be alert and drive slowly, especially during rainy or windy weather. Yield to plows that are clearing roads, and follow tire chain requirements when they are in place.

Stay on trails.
Though it may be tempting to wander, off-trail areas have hazards such as rolling rocks, holes, and unstable soils.

Be especially careful if it's rainy or windy.
Storms and wind make many of the hazards even more dangerous. Consider waiting until the weather is better before you travel in a burned area.

If you encounter dangerous conditions, turn back.
Conditions in burned areas can change quickly. Turn around if you see a problem and you're not sure if it's safe to continue.

Report dangerous conditions to park staff.
Be safe around rivers. Rivers present great danger due to their swift currents and slippery rocks. In river-related deaths, many people did not intend to swim, but fell in. Currents are strong even during low water.

Last updated: November 9, 2021

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47050 Generals Highway
Three Rivers , CA 93271

Phone:

559 565-3341

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