Santa Rosa, CA – March 30, 2018 – Sonoma County Regional Parks has reopened the Pythian Road
entrance to Hood Mountain Regional Park & Preserve.
The southern half of the park reached from Pythian Road had
been closed since the October 2017 wildfires swept across large portions of the
mountain. This section of the park experienced some of the more severe fire impacts,
with forested slopes scorched and other areas significantly
marked by the firefight.
Parks staff, partners, and contractors have worked for the past the several months to assess burned trees, repair trails, reinforce retaining
walls and rebuild culverts to make the park safe for public access.
Most of the trails reached via Pythian Road are open,
including trails leading to the summit (2,700 feet elevation) and Gunsight
Rock. The areas around Merganser and Blue Heron ponds are closed for ongoing restoration.
Visitors will notice burn scars, bulldozer scrapes,
and erosion-control efforts as well as significant regrowth, including green grasses, vibrant wildflowers, and new leaves on trees and shrubs.
Hikers are urged to follow new directional signs and stay
out of closed areas. Due to terrain and elevation gain, many of Hood Mountain's
trails are considered moderately difficult to challenging, including the initial climb from the parking area at 1450 Pythian Road, Santa Rosa.
Hood Mountain’s northern entrance at 3000 Los Alamos Road
reopened in January.
To learn more about the fire’s impacts, Regional
Parks is hosting Wildfire Ecology Hikes from Pythian Road on April
14 and May 19. The April hike is full, but space is available in
Hood Mountain hours are 7 a.m. to sunset. Visitors should bring plenty of water, as drinking water is not available in the park.