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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Springs Fire Numbers Are Revised

BY SUZANNE GULDIMANN

Cal Fire is reporting that the Springs Fire, which ignited near the Ventura Freeway in Camarillo Springs on May 2, at 7:01 a.m., and reached Pacific Coast Highway at Point Mugu and Big Sycamore Canyon in hours, burned 24,251 acres. A total of 10 outbuildings were destroyed, and six commercial properties and six additional outbuildings were damaged. There were 10 injuries associated with the fire, none of them serious. The cause remains under investigation.
The acreage, initially estimated at 28,000 was reduced based upon more accurate mapping, according to a Cal Fire press release.
According to the National Park Service, the fire burned more than 1000 acres of NPS land and more than 12,000 acres of California State Parks land.
The National Park Service re-opened trails on the western side of the Santa Monica Mountains, including the popular Sandstone Peak and Mishe Mokwa trailheads, and the Backbone Trail east of the Point Mugu State Park, with restrictions.
“We know the public is anxious to return to their neighborhood national park,” said David Szymanski, superintendent of Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. “We're working as hard as we can to balance that enthusiasm with visitor safety and protection of our resources.”
Park officials estimate 70 percent of Rancho Sierra Vista Park’s 1170 acres burned. 
The fire raced from Rancho Sierra Vista to PCH, burning the popular Sycamore Canyon Campground. The beach and picnic area at Sycamore Cove was not damaged and fire crews were able to save several Sycamore Canyon structures, including a visitor center and equipment yard.
The Sycamore campground, La Jolla Valley group campsite, and Chumash Trail are expected to reopen on Friday. However, some backcountry trails will remain closed.
Visitors are encouraged to respecting trail closures and stay on the trail in the areas that are open.

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