Six state parks in the Big Sur area have been closed temporarily because of the Soberanes fire raging along California's Central Coast. California State Parks says campgrounds at two of the parks will remain closed until at least Aug. 13.
"Campers with reservations during the closure are being contacted by phone and email by our reservation vendor, Reserve America, and are receiving refunds," state parks spokesman Dennis Weber writes in an email.
Parks were shut Tuesday. Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, about 26 miles south of Carmel, has 120 campsites that will now remain closed. Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park has just two reservable campsites. They will be closed until Aug. 13. Also, no reopening date has been set for the walk-in campground at Andrew Molera State Park.
Andrew Molera State Park has a back-country campground available on a first-come, first-served basis. That will remain closed until the park reopens.
Some hiking trails in the area as well as in Los Padres National Forest's Monterey Ranger District have been closed too.
If you have camping reservations after Aug. 13 and are worried about the fire, you may cancel up to 48 hours before your arrival date to receive a refund (though you won't get the service fee back).
Day-use parks — Garrapata State Park, Point Lobos State Reserve, Andrew Molera State Park and Point Sur State Historic Park — also are closed because of the fire that broke out July 22. Twenty homes have been destroyed, and the blaze has grown to 23,568 acres as of Wednesday afternoon. It also claimed the life of a heavy equipment operator fighting the fire.
State parks will wait for firefighters to gain control of the fire before making decisions about closures beyond Aug. 13. The fire was 10% contained as of Wednesday.
Before you visit the Big Sur area, check the Cal Fire Incident Information website for trail, road and park closures.
12:05 p.m. July 29: This article has been updated with news that the state park campground reservations in the Big Sur area would be closed until Aug. 13.