Three Sisters Falls

SHERIFF RESCUES 8 HIKERS AT THREE SISTERS FALLS

 

Story and photos by Miriam Raftery

June 18, 2017 (Cleveland National Forest) – Days after the Sheriff’s department issued an advisory urging hikers to avoid the Three Sisters Falls and Cedar Creek Falls trails during the current excessive heat warning, the department had to rescue eight hikers in distress on the Three Sisters Falls trail in Cleveland National Forest Saturday afternoon.

SHERIFF WARNS AGAINST HIKING TWO POPULAR TRAILS DURING EXTREME HEAT

 

Source:  San Diego County Sheriff's Department

June 17, 2017 (San Diego's East County) - An excessive heat watch is in effect for the desert areas of San Diego County.  With temperatures soaring to dangerous levels, the Sheriff's Department is reminding the public to take precautions when doing outdoor activities.  

TWO RESCUES IN 8 DAYS FROM THREE SISTERS FALLS

 

East County News Service

Photo via San Diego County Sheriff's Department

April 11, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – For the second time in just over a week, an emergency crew had to rescue an injured hiker off the trail to Three Sisters Falls in the Cleveland National Forest near Julian.

RESCUES AND A SMALL FIRE AT THREE SISTERS FALLS

 

East County News Service

Photo: Hikers at trailhead to Three Sisters Falls (file photo)

June 20, 2016 (Julian) – Yesterday, a small vegetation fire off Boulder Creek Road a half mile from Three Sisters Falls near Julian was swiftly doused. Palomar Hot Shots, helicopters, U.S. Forest Service and a Cal Fire air tanker attacked the blaze when it had charred only a quarter of an acre at mid-morning yesterday.

FOREST SERVICE RELEASES DRAFT ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT FOR THREE SISTERS FALLS TRAILS AND RESOURCE ISSUES

 

East County News Service

June 6, 2016 (Descanso) -- The Forest Service has prepared a draft environmental assessment (EA) for the proposed Three Sisters Falls Recreation Management project, and we are asking you to review it and provide comments. This project was developed to establish a trailhead and trails along Boulder Creek Road and address public safety and resource issues in the Three Sisters Falls area. The draft EA is available on the Cleveland National Forest’s project webpage, listed below, or by clicking here. Hard copies are available from the project leader, identified below.

http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/nepa_project_exp.php?project=46285

MAJOR TRAIL CHANGES PROPOSED TO THREE SISTERS FALLS

 

 

Public comments due by March 25

By Miriam Raftery

February 25, 2015 (San Diego’s East County)--Three Sisters Falls is one of the most beautiful natural attractions in East County – a trio of waterfalls and natural swimming holes in a wilderness area within Cleveland National Forest.  But the falls are also among the most difficult scenic sites to access.

Now Cleveland National Forest’s Palomar Ranger District is planning a major recreation management   project at Three Sisters Falls, located near Boulder Creek Road between Santa Ysabel  and Descanso. The proposed action is to adopt and/or construct a Level 2 System Trail to Three Sisters Falls, to decommission and restore existing user-created trails, and to clear and construct  a primitive dirt or gravel parking area off of Boulder Creek Road, also adding a kiosk with educational materials.

The purpose of this project is to  address concerns related to public health and safety, resource impacts from unmanaged recreation use, and compromised access along Boulder Creek Road for area residents and emergency vehicles during high-use periods at Three Sisters Falls, says district ranger Joan Friedlander.

TEEN HIKING VICTIM IDENTIFIED

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo from Yasmen Vidales’ Facebook page

August 1, 2014 (Ramona) – An 18-year-old woman who died July 22 of heat exhaustion following a hike in the Three Sisters Falls area has been identified as Yasmen Vidales, the San Diego Medical Examiner’s office reports.  A recent graduate of Chula Vista High School, she also played in the school’s orchestra.

HIKERS LOST OVERNIGHT FOUND SAFE AT THREE SISTERS FALLS

 

By Miriam Raftery

March 27, 2014 (Julian) – Last night shortly after 8 p.m., a lost hiker called the Sheriff’s communication center to report that he and a companion were lost in the rugged Three Sisters Falls area near Julian.  Their cell phone was dying and they could not find their way back to their vehicle, said Sergeant Carlos Medina at the Julian Sheriff’s Substation.

READER’S EDITORIAL: WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT SDG&E’S PROPOSAL FOR CLEVELAND NATIONAL FOREST

 

By Cindy Buxton, Chair, Forest Committee of the San Diego Sierra Club

 

“This is the general “neck of the woods” of the famous Cedar Creek Falls and Three Sisters Waterfall… We are hoping for universal outcry to insist that all parties, SDG&E, the CPUC, and the USFS will embrace this as the golden opportunity to evolve community safety and environmental integrity forward.” – Cindy Buxton

October 21, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) -- The U.S. Forest Service (USFS) sent out its request for scoping on SDG&E’s Master Permit renewal.  The comment period is through November 7th.   Document links are provided at the end of this editorial.

The Forest Service, in an attempt to consistently and effectively manage wilderness and wilderness-like portions of their Forest, recommends moving the 626 69kV line that runs up Boulder Creek Road out of these fragile areas and makes this suggestion along with a mile or so wide corridor for study where portions of the line could be moved. But there more to this proposal than meets the eye.

HIKER DIES ON TRAIL AFTER FINDING THREE SISTERS FALLS DRY

By Miriam Raftery

September 30, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – A 27-year-old Coronado man collapsed and died yesterday on the return hike from Three Sisters Falls.  According to the San Diego Medical Examiner’s office, the man was hiking with three friends on the trail in the Descanso/Julian area when he collapsed.

“It was a hot day and the falls apparently were dried up,” the Medical Examiner’s website reports.  Temperatures were in the 80s, with an excessive heat warning from the National Weather Service in effect.

HIKER RESCUED AT THREE SISTERS FALLS


August 14, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – San Diego Sheriff’s ASTREA helicopter rescued a woman, 28, suffering from heat exhaustion near Three Sisters Falls at 4 p.m. today.  

Sgt. Mark Johnson and Deputy Warren Voth found the distressed hiker about halfway down the trail from the trailhead parking area. The helicopter landed and Deputy Voth hiked down the trail to the victim.

INTOXICATED HIKER ARRESTED

 
July 25, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – The San Diego Sheriff’s office responded to a 911 call Monday at 5:17 p.m. regarding a female hiker who reportedly had fallen off a rock while hiking at Three Sisters Falls.  Law Enforcement and Fire/Rescue resources were dispatched to the scene. These resources consisted of a Sheriff's Deputy, a fire/rescue helicopter, A Sheriff's Department law enforcement patrol helicopter, as well as engine companies from the U.S. Forest Service and CAL FIRE.

HIKER INJURY ON THREE SISTERS FALLS TRAIL


By Miriam Raftery

May 9, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) –  A 49-year-old man suffered a head injury in a tumble down a trail leading to Three Sisters Falls on April 29.   The injury occurred at a steep section of trail where hikers must descend by rope, ECM has learned.

“The Forest Service considers this area unimproved wilderness,” said Lt. Todd Richardson with the Sheriff’s  office, which performed a hoist rescue via helicopter. 

Unlike nearby Cedar Creek Falls, where trails are maintained, the U.S. Forest Service declines to maintain trails in unimproved wilderness  areas such as Three Sisters Trails that are not officially designated as hiking trails.

HIKER INJURED AT THREE SISTERS FALLS TELLS HER STORY

Wants falls to stay accessible to public; offers safety suggestions for hikers--and for the U.S. Forest Service
 

By Miriam Raftery
 

February 13, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – “Someone was watching out for me,” says Ofelia Gutierrez , 56, who is home from the hospital after two surgeries for serious injuries sustained when she tumbled head-over-heels at Three Sisters Falls in East County on February 6th. In an exclusive interview with East County Magazine, the seasoned hiker shares her dramatic story.