County of San Diego Communications Office
Five San Diego County parks will be closed in August, a safety measure taken each year because of the expected high temperatures.
El Capitan Preserve in Lakeside, Hellhole Canyon Preserve in Valley Center and Mt. Gower County Preserve in Ramona will be closed Aug. 1 through 31. In addition, Agua Caliente and Vallecitos County Parks near Anza Borrego are closed all summer; they reopen Labor Day weekend.
The closures also provide Department of Parks and Recreation staff with an opportunity to conduct much needed maintenance including trail restoration. This work is done in the early morning or evening while it is cooler.
There are more than 100 other county parks and preserves to explore during the month of August. Cool off at splash pads, on a lawn or under the shade of decades-old oaks. Go birdwatching at San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve. Or enjoy a free Summer Movies in the Park screening at dusk after it cools off.
The next movie to be shown in Fallbrook is “The Bad Guys” at the Fallbrook Community Center, 6 p.m., Aug. 11.
If it is really hot, consider staying home or plan your next hike by taking one of these virtual tours of some of the County’s most popular trails, at https://www.countynewscenter.com/tag/virtual-hike/.
If you do go out for a hike, be smart about it! Here are some safety tips to consider:
· Let someone know where you will be and when you plan to return.
· Hike with others, never alone.
· Leave your dog at home for difficult hikes. Even “easy” hikes may be too much for your dog when the air or ground are too hot.
· Take plenty of water to stay hydrated. Rangers recommend one liter (about a quart) for every 2 to 3 miles.
· Wear sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses.
· Take breaks in the shade, if possible.
· Take a fully charged mobile phone, map and/or GPS.
· Wear lightweight, light-colored, ventilated clothing.
· Bring along a warm jacket if you plan to stay out after dusk.
· Wear sturdy shoes with traction for slippery rocks.
· Follow all posted safety rules.
· Bring ample food, sunscreen to reapply, a flashlight, first aid kit, multi-purpose tool and a whistle.
· Know your limitations; choose trails that match your level of physical fitness and areas where you are not going to get lost.
For additional information on visiting County Parks, visit sdparks.org.