Helping To Keep Communities Safe
Medford, Ore May 12, 2023 –Selma, Oregon May 22, 2023– The Wild and Scenic Illinois River is renowned for its outstanding remarkable values: its blue-green, crystal-clear waters; its abundant and diverse fisheries; its unique and diverse landscapes; its spectacular and varied recreational values; and its botanical biodiversity. Recreation segments of Wild and Scenic Rivers are places regarded for providing a variety of experiences, including solitude, a connection with the landscape, or a family-friendly recreation-based experience.
Beginning in 2016, the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest implemented a temporary ban on alcohol possession on this stretch of the river. Due to the successes since 2016, the RRSNF continues to renew the ban annually, which is effective for this season May 24, 2023 through September 30, 2024.
Said Wild Rivers District Ranger Scott Blower, “The decision to implement the ban arose from the concern for public safety, and has been met with overwhelming support from both the local communities and those who travel to the river from outside areas. With a seasonal ban in place for the last seven years, we’ve heard that people feel they can once again take their families to the river, and are really grateful that the Forest has taken steps to try to address an ongoing problem.”
As in previous years, the area included in the temporary alcohol ban extends from the Forest boundary on the Illinois River Road to an area near the McCaleb Ranch, and also includes the area surrounding Cedar Camp. The ban is effective approximately ¼ mile on either side of the Illinois River Road in those areas.
A map detailing those areas, as well as a list of developed recreation sites included in the ban may be found here https://tinyurl.com/3jhnuz27
The seasonal ban will not be in effect on privately-owned lands, nor will it apply to those who are driving on the Illinois River Road to reach a destination outside of the closure area.
Violation of the alcohol ban is punishable by law, with the penalty for violation up to 6 months in jail and a $5,000 fine.
“Responsible recreation is something that all Forest visitors can participate in, simply by remembering to pack out what they pack in—leaving no trace—and by being good stewards. We all have a stake in our public lands,” said Blower.
The Illinois River is a part of the nation’s Wild and Scenic River system, with 50.4 miles designated in 1984, which includes the 3.8-mile long Recreational section.