Sequoia National Forest camps closed for Labor Day but out-of-town travelers pitch tent anyway

Local News

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — People are traveling to Kern County to celebrate Labor day with their friends and families at one of Kern’s most scenic locations, the Kern River.

However, the river holds many dangers.

People from all over California are out to celebrate. But here in Kern County there are campsites that are still shut down because of the French Fire.

But even though the gates are locked people are still getting in.

The Sequoia National Forest is closed and that means all campsites and utilities in the campgrounds are off limits too.

But many people who traveled for Labor Day ignored the closures and set up camp anyway.

More than 40 cars were parked alongside turn offs near the Kern River on Highway 178.

Some people came to swim and fish.
Others to hike and eat grilled food in a scenic Kern location.

“We come from Palmdale California and we came camping but everything was closed,” Jerry Recinos a Labor Day camper said. “I guess there was a fire out here. So on the way back down we ended up deciding to stop by. We saw a couple of people.. a lot of people and we ended up staying the night. We saw a couple of fish out here. I saw one like this big, like this big so I’m hoping to catch one of those.”

Many of the out-of-town visitors came from southland communities like Hollywood, Los Angeles, and even San Diego.

“I came from North Hollywood, we’re celebrating Labor Day,” Dianna Cruzvelasco a nine-year-old Kern visitor said. “We’re going to swim and play.”

Most of the travelers all had one thing in common. They were happy to be out of the house.

“It’s been a long time since we’ve gone out because of COVID, the pandemic,” Recinos said. “So it’s just a day to remember a weekend to remember.”

Most of the people we talked with said they’ll return home Monday night or early Tuesday morning.

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