CDCR-Ben Lomond Conservation Camp #45

CDCR Fire Camp

Last Updated: February 28, 2024
13575 Empire Grade Rd, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Santa Cruz

Ben Lomond Camp #45 is for CDCR Fire Camp offenders have not been sentenced yet and are detained here until their case is heard.

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Satellite View of CDCR-Ben Lomond Conservation Camp #45

You can support your loved ones at Ben Lomond Camp #45 on InmateAid, if you have any immediate questions contact the facility directly at 831-426-1652.

Ben Lomond Camp #45 is a minimum-security facility under CDCR supervision, this camp plays a crucial role in supporting government agencies during emergency responses to wildfires, floods, and other natural or man-made disasters. Additionally, camp crews contribute to park maintenance, assist with flood mitigation through sandbagging, and participate in reforestation projects. Participation in the Conservation (Fire) Camp Program is entirely voluntary for incarcerated individuals. Those who choose to volunteer must meet specific eligibility criteria aimed at ensuring public safety. These include avenues for criminal record expungement, creating new pathways for employment, and aiding in their successful reintegration into society.

Ben Lomond Camp #45, a collaborative effort between the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) and the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE), serves as a cornerstone in enhancing the safety and quality of life for the residents of Santa Cruz County and beyond. Nestled in the mountains of Santa Cruz County, approximately 12 miles from the town of Santa Cruz, the camp offers an invaluable rehabilitative environment for incarcerated individuals to develop essential skills and discipline necessary for successful reintegration into society.

With a primary mission centered around community service and rehabilitation, Ben Lomond Camp #45 plays a crucial role in providing tens of thousands of hours of community service annually. The camp's crews engage in diverse activities, including fire suppression, stream clearing, trail, and levee improvements, as well as assistance in rescues, floods, and landslides. As an ongoing and consistently available resource, the camp stands ready to assist local authorities whenever called upon.

The journey to becoming a participant at Ben Lomond Camp begins with training where volunteers undergo assessments to determine their eligibility for camp placement. Once training is completed, eligible participants transition to Ben Lomond Camp, which accommodates a maximum of 113 individuals, all of whom are minimum custody male felon convicts. This population allows for the formation of five 17-man fire crews, with additional volunteers assigned to various support roles such as kitchen workers, porters, landscapers, launderers, clerks, mechanics, and maintenance workers. To qualify for participation, incarcerated volunteers must not have any convictions for sex-related offenses, arson, escape, or exhibit a high potential for violence.

At Ben Lomond Conservation Camp, participants reside in an open-dormitory setting, with a dining hall staffed by inmates and supervised by correctional staff. All facilities undergo regular inspections to ensure compliance with standards set by the State Department of Health Services.

In addition to firefighting duties, incarcerated firefighters at Ben Lomond Camp engage in vital conservation and community service projects as directed by CAL FIRE. These projects encompass a wide range of activities, including fuel reduction, burning debris, trail restoration, stream rehabilitation, and beach cleanup. The camp also hosts an in-house mechanic shop managed by CAL FIRE, which maintains equipment used at the camp, alongside a farm maintained by camp participants.

Furthermore, Ben Lomond Camp offers a variety of rehabilitative and educational services to its participants, including substance abuse programs, religious services, hobby-craft activities, and access to GED and college courses. Through their participation in these programs and their diligent efforts during emergencies, camp participants cultivate a strong work ethic and a sense of self-worth, laying a solid foundation for successful reintegration into their communities upon release.

Both CDCR and CAL FIRE provide ongoing training and feedback for crew members, ensuring continuous improvement and job performance evaluations. Additionally, community volunteers contribute by providing spiritual and religious services, further enriching the rehabilitative environment at Ben Lomond Conservation Camp #45.

Inmate Locator

To utilize the Inmate Search page on InmateAid, begin by selecting the relevant prison facility in California. This allows you to view the current list of inmates housed at CDCR-Ben Lomond Conservation Camp #45 .

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Visitation Information

Visiting is conducted on weekends and can be a critical part of an incarcerated person’s rehabilitation.

Families can bring a picnic lunch during visits. For more information, visit the Scheduling Visits at Conservation (Fire) Camps page.

Ask The Inmate

Ask a former inmate questions at no charge. The inmate answering has spent considerable time in the federal prison system, state and county jails, and in a prison that was run by the private prison entity CCA. Ask your question or browse previous questions in response to comments or further questions of members of the InmateAid community.