Travel Tips for Fire Season

Summertime in Siskiyou offers endless breathtaking summits, cool alpine lakes, and all the outdoor adventures you can handle. It also brings with it increased risk of wildfire. While non human-caused wildfires are part of the natural ecosystem in Siskiyou, they can be a real bummer if you’re not prepared. This guide will help you recreate safely in Siskiyou during fire season, which typically occurs from August – October.

Campfire (Canva)

Don’t Cause Fires

As Smokey Bear says, “Only you can prevent wildfires.” Being a smart and safe traveler includes  knowledge of simple prevention practices: Maintain your equipment and vehicle – if you’re towing, triple check that you aren’t dragging any chains. Don’t park near dry brush or grasses, research and respect burn/campfire bans, and always put your campfire OUT COLD! If you are unsure about how to put your campfire out completely (hint: pouring water on it isn’t enough), visit our blog on How to Extinguish a Campfire – Discover Siskiyou for details.

KNF (Discover Siskiyou)

Stay Informed

While vacation is a great time to go offline and check-out, we recommend downloading a few tools before you leave home in case a fire occurs while you are traveling in Siskiyou. Here are a few of our favorites:

  • Watch Duty is a mobile App that alerts users of wildfire and firefighting efforts in real-time.
  • InciWeb is a web based interagency source for wildfire information that is provided by the US Forest Service.
  • Air Now is a useful resource for current smoke and air quality reporting.

Smoke (Canva)

Have a Backup Plan

Be flexible with your plans and research alternative lodging options in the event that fire or smoke alter your experience. For example, If you are planning to camp at Kangaroo Lake, and there is fire danger or smoke nearby, possibly alter your plans to stay at Castle Lake, or select a location like Lake Siskiyou to be closer to town and services. Siskiyou has a wide variety of lodging options across our vast region if you experience a last-minute change in travel plans!

(Discover Siskiyou)

Go Back and Give Back

When the fires clear, try to go back and support affected regions, particularly local businesses like Quigley’s General Store in the community of Klamath River or the Seiad Café in Seiad Valley which were both threatened and devastated by the McKinney Fire in 2022. Visiting Siskiyou’s diverse communities and small businesses ensures that they will be here for future travelers to enjoy.