On the eve of the two-year anniversary of the 2018 Woolsey Fire, Malibu's Charmlee Wilderness Park reopened on Monday, Oct. 19.
The fire, which burned 96,949 acres in Ventura and Los Angeles counties, damaged thousands of acres of state, national and county parkland as well as land and structures inside Charmlee, a 532-acre nature preserve located on the outskirts of Malibu between Encinal and Decker Canyon roads, two canyons that sustained some of the heaviest damage from the November 2018 fire.
When the park was last open, it was being operated by the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority, a sister agency of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy under Joe Edmiston. Shortly after the Woolsey Fire, Malibu City Council regained control of the park, "swapping" it back for the 83 undeveloped acres of Malibu Bluffs Park located in the center of the city. Now, Charmlee is once again a Malibu park.
City officials originally were hoping to open the park in late September, but plans were pushed back.
The last update from the City of Malibu stated repairs in the park began in June.
"Repair work to the trail system and erosion control began on June 3, and is expected to take several months to complete," the city's website describes. In a surprise announcement on Monday, Oct. 19, the city stated the park had reopened for visitors earlier that morning.
"The City of #Malibu's beautiful Charmlee Wilderness Park re-opens for public use Mon, Oct 19, 2020 daily from 8AM to sunset, with #COVID19 safety protocols," a tweet from the city stated. "The park had been closed since sustaining heavy damage during #WoolseyFire."
As of Monday early afternoon, the city's website had not yet been updated, but information on Charmlee can be found by clicking here.