Popular Los Padres National Forest Recreation Area reopens after eight months of closure

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LOS PADRES NATIONAL FOREST, Calif. — A popular recreation area in Los Padres National Forest is reopening to the public after an 8-month restoration project.

“We’ve been dreaming about this project for at least 25 years,” said Kristie Klose, fisheries program manager.

The Davy Brown and Munch Creeks Aquatic Organism Passage Restoration Project, a $4 million project that took years to plan and 8 months to complete.

Los Padres National Forest officials, partners and the community celebrated the milestone.

Park officials say two bridges have been built to help the rainbow trout.

“[Trout] are known to inhabit these creeks and unfortunately as a result of the previous crossing of creeks that were here they were preventing fish migration from accessing the excellent habitat that is found upstream here along davy brown creek, as well as munch creek,” said Mauricio Gomez of South Coast Habitat Restoration.

Officials say two bridges were built over the low stream crossings.

They hope this will allow the fish to find their way into a better habitat.

“We’ve added over 3 miles of river habitat for Steelhead, by installing these bridges,” Klose said.

At this time, this species of trout is endangered.

National park rangers said that currently there are only 177 trout swimming in the area.

As for the community, officials are advising everyone to be extra careful when driving there.

“There is no fishing here,” Klose said. It is an endangered species, so you are not allowed to fish.

This space will be open to the public from Thursday at midnight.

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