The Bobcat Fire began on Sept 6, near Cogswell Dam on the West Fork of the San Gabriel River. It grew rapidly and has consumed 114,004 acres as September 26th. Despite valiant efforts to hold a line on Clamshell Ridge, the Bobcat Fire completely overwhelmed Big Santa Anita Canyon, with the fate of the 80 remaining historic cabins within the canyon unknown and and potentially destroying badly damaging venerable Sturtevant Camp, last of the resort camps from the Great hiking Era. Adams’ Pack Station survived through a heroic effort by firefighters and a little bit of luck. The fire nearly threatened Mt Wilson Observatory for more than a week before exploding on its northmost edge into the desert, destroying dozens of homes in Juniper Hills.

The Bobcat Fire is the second largest fire in the history of Los Angeles County. Big Santa Anita Canyon was completely ravaged by this fire which burned hot and fast because of 70 years of unburned fuels. Now, the slow and painful rebuilding must begin. Roads and trails need clearing. Winter will bring damaging slides and mud/debris dams will need to be constructed to protect remaining trials and structures. Hazardous cabin debris must also by cleared to protect visitors.

We need your help. Your donations will help us organize, equip, and feed work parties. Non-monetary donations will also be recognized. Construction materials are needed for any structures that were destroyed. The donkeys at Adams’ Pack Station need hay and veterinary services. There are many ways to help.

All our partners have suffered enormous losses and many face existential threats. While Adams’ Pack Station was not destroyed, it experienced significant losses from the evacuation, loss of food and merchandise, and loss of housing. More importantly, Adams’ Pack Station has lost revenue from hikers indefinitely. Adams’ Pack Station is the life blood of Big Santa Anita Canyon, serving the historic cabins, the Forest Service, and Sturtevant Camp.

The Friends of the San Gabriels maintains the communications systems that sustain Adams’ Pack Station, trail repairs, trash pickup and other work parties. Both the primary radio repeater and the historic trail-side phone system were destroyed. The Friends of the San Gabriels needs your donations to repair these two vital systems that will support the rebuilding process and are invaluable during canyon emergencies.

Lastly, you can get involved in the rebuilding directly.  The Angeles National Forest hosts an active Volunteer program (https://www.fs.usda.gov/main/angeles/workingtogether/volunteering). Participate in work parties when the forest reopens.

 

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