SWEETWATER COUNTY– Fire restrictions in the Ashley National Forest will be in effect starting Monday, July 2, as current and forecasted weather, coupled with extremely dry conditions have created substantial hazardous fire potential.
This fire restriction will affect the shoreline of the Flaming Gorge.
“The Ashley National Forest is the entire shoreline of the Flaming Gorge so this will impact a lot of folks who recreate along the shorelines in make shift and unimproved camp sites,” Sweetwater County Fire Ward Mike Bournazian said.
There are, however, no fire restrictions in effect for private lands within Sweetwater County or on BLM lands at this time.
Fire Restriction Details
Restrictions for the Ashley National Forest include prohibition of:
- Igniting, building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, including charcoal and briquettes, outside a fire structure that is provided by the Forest Service within a designated area
EXCEPT : Fires are allowed in constructed, permanent fire pits or fire grates within developed Forest Service campgrounds, picnic areas, and recreation sites. Petroleum-fueled stoves, lanterns, or heating devices that meet the fire underwriter’s specifications for safety are allowed.
- Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared to of all flammable material.
- Operating or using any internal or external combustion engine without a spark arresting device properly installed, maintained and in effective working order.
- Cutting, grinding or welding in areas of vegetation.
Fire crews will be completing additional patrols during this time; however, visitors are encouraged to exercise extreme caution with any type of activity that could start a wildfire.
If you do have a fire within an allowed facility as outlined in the exceptions above, please strictly adhere to the following precautions:
- Always have a full bucket of water close to the campfire
- Always have a shovel on hand and available
- Always put the campfire out when you entire for the night or leave camp
- Always drown the fire, stir the ashes, drown and stir again until it is dead out
- Never leave a campfire unattended
- Never have a campfire when it is windy, hot and dry
For more information on the restrictions, visitors are encouraged to call 435-789-1181.
Fireworks Prohibited on All Public Lands
As always, Fireworks are prohibited on ALL Public Lands. This includes the Bureau of Land Management, United States Forest Service, Bureau of Reclamation, United States Fish and Wildlife Service, and Wyoming State Lands as well.
“I cannot stress enough the importance of recreationists to know where they are and who’s lands they are on at all times, along with the need to use extreme vigilance when lighting fireworks,” Bournazian said.
“Sweetwater County wants all its residents and visitors to enjoy their freedoms and the wide open, unfenced spaces our county has to offer. This however comes with an increased expectation that everyone enjoys their festivities in a responsible fashion.
“The last thing we want is to have to start implementing restrictions that may impact many across our county due to a few who cannot use common sense in our wildlands,” he said. “And please, above all else, be safe and watch out for each other this 4th of July.”