Forest visitors urged to use caution this weekend

Foothills area residents planning to take advantage of recreational opportunities in the snow-covered Angeles National Forest this weekend are being advised to arrive prepared for icy conditions.

Among the items forest officials say visitors should pack are extra food and water, a flashlight, a first aid kit and a shovel. Tire chains may be required on the road, so it would be wise to have them aboard before entering the forest.

Attire should include layered clothing, gloves and boots suitable for the terrain. Phone reception in the San Gabriel Mountains is very limited, so it’s best to pack all the gear you might need to stay warm and safe until help arrives in the event of a car breakdown or other emergency.

“Visitors need to be extra cautions,” stated Forest Supervisor Jody Noiron, in a press release issued Friday. “Thousands of winter visitors to the Forest have safe and pleasant outings, but we all need to remember that recreation in the mountains this time of year means going prepared and constantly monitoring the conditions.”

ANF spokesman Stanton Florea said additional heavy snowfall expected in the forest this weekend “may even mean limited access to some areas due to the threat of avalanches.” He said more information can be found at www.fsavalanche.org.

Caltrans posts current road conditions for Angeles Crest Highway (State Route 2) and other state highways a (800) 427-7623. Road closure information can be found at www.ladpw.org/mpm/roadclosure .

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