Six Rivers National Forest Beginning Seasonal Closures for Port-Orford-cedar Protection

This is a press release from the Six Rivers National Forest:

Port-Orford-cedar infested with Phytophthora lateralis.

EUREKA, Calif. – With the anticipation of fall rains, Six Rivers National Forest Supervisor Ted McArthur has announced that some roads and campgrounds in the central and northern parts of the forest will be closed to motor-vehicle use within the week to reduce the risk of spreading Phytophthora lateralis (PL), the non-native pathogen that causes Port-Orford-cedar (POC) root disease.

These seasonal road and campground closures are in effect until road surfaces dry out in late spring or early summer, minimizing the potential spread of the disease. Under wet conditions, pathogen-laden soil is easily spread from infested to non-infested areas by vehicle tires and hiking boots, as well as horse hooves and dog paws.

“Even if you’re just hiking in these wet areas, cleaning off your muddy boots before walking behind a closed gate can prevent the spread of the disease from one watershed to another,” said Jeff Jones, the forest’s vegetation program manager. He added, “It’s important to observe these POC road closures, because the pathogen generally doesn’t spread into areas where there is no access.”

Once the root disease is introduced into an area, POC trees will die—young trees within a few months of infection and mature trees within two to four years.

There are many infested POC areas on the Gasquet Ranger District/Smith River National Recreation Area (NRA) and in the Bluff Creek drainage on the Orleans Ranger District. There are a few infested POC areas on the Lower Trinity Ranger District. Port-Orford-cedar does not grow on the Mad River Ranger District.

The following roads and campgrounds have been/or will be closed within the week:

•       Gasquet Ranger District/Smith River NRA: Forest Service Roads 18N17 and spurs; 18N16 and spurs; 18N02; portions of 18N07; the upper section of 18N08; 16N02, about 9 miles up and spurs beyond that point; the upper section of 16N03 and spurs; the upper section of 15N01, about 11 miles up and spurs beyond that point; and 14N01, about 4 miles up and spurs beyond that point; plus additional road closures on smaller routes not specified in this notice.

•       Orleans and Ukonom Ranger Districts: Forest Service Roads 13N01, 10N12, 10N42, 10N27, 10N14, 10N42, 11N28, 12N11, 14N02, 14N03, 13N17, 14N21, 11N47, 12N17, 11N04, 11N16, 11N49, 11N14, 10N06, 10N04, 12N10, 12N13, and all side roads off of these main roads, as well as Fish Lake Campground.

•       Lower Trinity Ranger District: Forest Service Roads 05N10, 06N18, 06N21, 06N22, 06N36, 06N38 and 07N71B, as well as East Fork Campground.

Forest staff will re-open these roads and campgrounds in late spring/early summer once the roads have dried out.

Information about Port-Orford-cedar is available at www.fs.usda.gov/goto/srnf/PortOrfordCedar or by contacting Jeff Jones at (707) 441-3553.

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3 comments

  • Damned Phytophthora, ive seen it kill hundreds of Yew trees, some that must be 200-300 yrs old S… tragic.

  • I don’t know what the big deal is. Because of poor management , there’s a good chance it’s all gonna burn eventually. I would bet on fire over Phytophthora……very tragic.

  • I think it is good to close off these places. I have seen some massive port orford die offs. Tragic. Should have been done years ago.

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