MALIBU (CBSLA) – Several local parks and trails managed by a local government agency which were closed by the devastating Woolsey Fire in the Malibu and Calabasas areas have reopened.
The Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority (MRCA) announced Friday that it has reopened several parks after soil tests determined that the Woolsey Fire did not increase radioactivity levels in the soil.
“Radiological analysis of soils in Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Open Space Preserve and other MRCA areas which determined that the fire had not increased the low-level concentrations of radionuclides that are generally consistent with normal background levels,” MRCA said in a news release.
The following parks have reopened:
Cameron Nature Preserve at Puerco Canyon
Corral Canyon Park – Sara Wan Trailhead
Fran Pavley Meadow
Las Virgenes View Trail
Liberty Canyon Trailhead
Triunfo Creek Park
Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Open Space Preserve
Zev Yaroslavsky Las Virgenes Highlands Park
However, Escondido Canyon Park and Charmlee Wilderness Park will remain closed due to hazardous conditions.
On Nov. 8, the 97,000-acre Woolsey Fire broke out south of Simi Valley. It then jumped the south side of the 101 Freeway near Calabasas and spread into Malibu. The fire destroyed more than 1,500 structures and was responsible for three deaths. It was not fully contained until Nov. 21.
According to the National Parks Service, the Woolsey Fire burned a staggering 88 percent (21,000 acres) of its land in the Santa Monica Mountains. Paramount Ranch, Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa, Cheeseboro Canyon and Palo Comado Canyon are the only NPS areas that have since reopened since the fire. Meanwhile, the Santa Monica Mountains Visitor Center is also closed due to the government shutdown.
On Wednesday, President Trump tweeted that he had ordered the Federal Emergency Management Agency to stop sending wildfire relief money to California over a dispute regarding how the state is managing its forests to mitigate wildfire risk.
Malibu homeowners have faced a slow and complicated rebuilding process. The Woolsey Fire destroyed nearly 500 homes, and as of Thursday, only about 15 rebuild applications have been approved.
The MCRA manages about 75,000 acres of parkland in Los Angeles and Ventura counties, including those belonging to Santa Monica Conservancy. Earlier this month, a businessman donated 226 acres of parkland to the MCRA which serves as a passage for wildlife across the 5 Freeway near the Santa Clarita Valley.