Ukiah Field Office

SOUTH COW MOUNTAIN WET WEATHER CLOSURE POLICY

Criteria for weather-related emergency closures at the South Cow Mountain Off-Highway-Vehicle Recreation area are as follows:

No action would be taken until the annual total precipitation exceeds 4 inches. The rain year would be the same as that used by the national weather service and rainfall data would be from the California Water Resources Board, nearest available rain gauge.

Beginning October 1 each year, once 4 inches of precipitation has been exceeded, the following would apply:

Additional rainfall exceeding 1/2 inch within a 24 hour period, or 1 inch within a 72 hour period will result in a temporary closure to all motorized vehicles. Once the closure has been implemented, a 3-day drying period will begin after no measurable precipitation is recorded. Once the area has been closed, a field inspection will be completed prior to reopening, and daily thereafter to determine suitability of road conditions. When recorded field observations show that road and trail surfaces have not dried sufficiently to allow traffic without damage to the surface, the area shall remain closed. Closure criteria may be amended or refined as results of area closures are evaluated. Specific criteria may be developed for other areas as needed.

These closures and restrictions are under the authority of 43 CFR 8364.1 and 43 CFR 8341.2.

Persons violating this closure shall be subject to the penalties provided in 43 CFR 8360.0-7 and 8340.0-7, including a fine not to exceed $100,000 and/or imprisonment not to exceed 12 months.

Parties exempt from the closure action shall be responsible for mitigating any resource damage caused by entering the closed area. Waivers can be granted for emergency circumstances; however, in the event an emergency is caused by a negligent action, the responsible party would then be responsible for the mitigation.

For 24 hour closure status information call:
(707) 468-4000