Los Padres National Forest Figueroa Mountain sign

Los Padres National Forest officials reopened the forest to public use Thursday, although modified fire restrictions will remain in effect as wildfire danger remains high.

Los Padres National Forest officials reopened public access to campgrounds, roads and trails on Sept. 23 after the forestwide closure expired.

Restrictions banning wood and charcoal fires will remain in effect throughout the forest but have been modified to allow portable lanterns and stoves with a shut-off valve to be used in developed campgrounds and dispersed sites with a valid California campfire permit.

The Angeles, Cleveland and San Bernardino national forests also reopened with modified or updated fire use restrictions, a U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman said.

Forestwide closures were instituted because of severe wildfire danger. More than 7,400 wildfires have burned approximately 2.25 million acres across all jurisdictions in California this year.

As of Sept. 20, the national preparedness level in Northern California, where most of the large fires raged, was lowered to that of Southern California, the spokeswoman said.

But because the potential continues for high-intensity fires and large fire growth, Los Padres officials will continue to monitor conditions for public and firefighter safety, she said.

For more information, visit www.fs.usda.gov/lpnf.

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