The Cleveland National Forest was closed today because of the federal government shutdown, and that is impacting campgrounds and picnic areas just west of Lake Elsinore and Wildomar.
The forest, along with Joshua Tree and Death Valley parks, were among the local national outdoor attractions that closed Oct. 1 due to the government shutdown sparked by a dispute over ObamaCare.
"Due to the lapse in federal government funding, the U.S. Forest Service, as with other federal agencies, is closed with the exception of certain essential services. However, we will attempt to make timely updates about public health and safety on these web pages as appropriate. We sincerely regret this inconvenience," an announcement from the U.S. Forest Service read today.
The following Cleveland National Forest services will be closed:
Trabuco Ranger District
• Blue Jay Campground
• California Wildland Firefighter Memorial
• El Cariso Campground
• El Cariso South Picnic Area
• Falcon Campground
• Wildomar Campground
• Wildomar Staging Area
These additional locations will remain open, but will have restrooms and/or water wells closed:
• San Juan Loop Trailhead
• Hot Springs Trailhead
• Tenaja Trailhead
Palomar Ranger District
• Observatory Campground
• Fry Creek Campground
• Crestline Campground
• Oak Grove Campground
• Dripping Springs Campground
• Indian Flats Campground
• San Luis Rey Picnic Area
• Inaja Picnic Area
• San Diego River Gorge Trailhead
• Kika Mik Overlook
• Dripping Springs Trailhead
Descanso Ranger District
• All developed recreation sites will be closed due to furlough.
• No facilities or recreation amenities will be provided during this time.
• All of the Corral Canyon OHV area will be closed.
For general information on Forest Service shutdown procedures, visit USDA’s website at http://www.usda.gov/.
As for the national parks, the U.S. Department of Interior website stated today, "Effective immediately upon a lapse in appropriations, the National Park Service will take all necessary steps to close and secure national park facilities and grounds in order to suspend all activities except for those that are essential to respond to emergencies involving the safety of human life or the protection of property."
Day use visitors have been instructed to leave the parks immediately and visitors utilizing overnight concession accommodations and campgrounds are be notified to make alternate arrangements and depart.
For information on the national parks' shutdown, go to