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Forest Service facilities prepped for Memorial Day campers



The Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests are ready for visitors this long Memorial Day Weekend.

Campsites — Most campgrounds offer first-come, first-served site selection, although you can reserve campsites at a few campgrounds managed by the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests. Contact your local Forest Service office for a list of local campgrounds that accept reservations.

To reserve a campsite, see recreation.gov or call 1 (877) 444-6777.

Visitors can camp at sites outside developed campgrounds called “dispersed sites.” However, campers who choose to stay in undeveloped sites should take extra care to protect natural resources, such as plant life. If you camp at a dispersed site, leave no trace of your stay. Use existing fire rings if available, and pack out your trash.

All campgrounds on the Palouse Ranger District are now open with all standard campground amenities available.

On the North Fork Ranger District, Aquarius, Washington Creek and Noe Creek Campgrounds are up and running. Two popular campgrounds will remain closed through Memorial Day weekend: Kelly Forks Campground is scheduled to open June 8, and Hidden Creek Campground is expected to open June 15.

All campgrounds on the Powell and Lochsa Ranger Districts are open, including Wilderness Gateway, Powell, Wendover and Whitehouse Campgrounds. White Sand Campground is technically open all year and the snow melted in late April. Access to Elk Summit Campground is anticipated by mid-June.

Water systems in the Powell-area campgrounds have been turned on but not tested. Water is not potable until the water tests come back.

Jerry Johnson Campground will remain closed all summer, and Jerry Johnson Hot Springs is open for day use only from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Campers will have to bring water if they plan to stay at other Lochsa River sites.

On the Moose Creek Ranger District, all of the campgrounds that flank the beautiful “Wild and Scenic” Selway River are open. There will be no potable water at any of the campgrounds along the Selway River with the exception of Johnson Bar. The RV dump station at Cedar Flats is open. Water is available at the dump station.

On the Salmon River Ranger District, all of the following campgrounds are $12 a night:

Castle Creek and South Fork Campground are open and potable water is available. However, dumpsters will not be available until June 1. A camp host is on site.

Fish Creek Campground, located seven miles south of Grangeville is open with potable water available.

Spring Bar Campground, located along the Salmon River is closed due to wildfire damage.

The Forest Service is “currently working on repairs and plan to have Spring Bar re-opened July 1.”

The Red River Campground, located on the Red River Ranger District, is open. Water is on and is potable. A camp host will be available this year.

Trails — Visitors hiking forest trails over Memorial Day weekend might encounter downed trees, rocks, flooded trails, or other hazards. Also, numerous trails on the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests were impacted in the 2015 season by wildland fires, which created hazards typical of recently-burned areas, such as falling trees, rolling logs and rocks, poor tread, and holes from burned-out stumps.

Trails on the Lochsa/Powell Ranger Districts are clear of snow to roughly 5,000 feet elevation.

The only trail open on the Moose Creek Ranger District is the Selway River Trail 4. Meadow Creek Trail 726 won’t open until June.

UTVs (side-by-sides), regardless of weight or width, are not allowed on Forest Service trails.

Roads — Traffic restrictions remain in place due to the slide on Highway 14. Contact the Red River Ranger District at 839-2211 or the Idaho County Sheriff’s Office at 983-1100 for current schedules.

Road 100 on the Lochsa Ranger District is open from Kamiah to the Musselshell Work Center.

Most Powell Ranger District roads are open for the first five to 10 miles before you hit snow or downed trees.

Most Salmon River Ranger District roads are open, except higher elevations roads such as Square Mountain Road 444.

Most Red River Ranger District roads are still blocked by snow, which is melting.

The Magruder Road Corridor (Road 468) between Elk City and Darby, Mont., will be closed through July 1 from Kim Creek Saddle to the Magruder Crossing. On the Elk City side, the road is open the first six miles. The rest remains closed by snow or maintenance.

Up-to-date Info Online

For current campground, road and trail updates, contact your local Forest Service office or visit on-line at: www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/nezperceclearwater/alerts-notice.



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