Okanogan-Wenatchee NF Campfire restrictions begin

UPDATED 12:10 p.m. July 25, 2013 – LIBERTY, WA – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) added this specific info for their Liberty region, as impacted by the broader National Forest restrictions (scroll down to see the original press release):

Liberty Campsite Fire Restrictions – The Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest has enacted a campfire restriction due to continuing hot, dry weather conditions and increasing fire danger.  As a result the Bureau of Land Management is following the closure and is not allowing any fires (steel ring or otherwise) at the Liberty recreation site located about 20 miles north of Ellensburg, WA.  Visitors are still welcome to use pressurized gas stoves at the camp area.

At this time there are no fire restrictions in place on BLM-managed lands elsewhere in the State of Washington, however the public is asked to consider fire conditions and only use a fire where fire rings have been provided.

For further information call (509) 665-2100 or visit the BLM Spokane District website at: http://www.blm.gov/or/districts/spokane/index.php

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10:30 a.m. July 25, 2013 – KITITAS COUNTY—The Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest has issued a Forest Order prohibiting campfires outside of developed campgrounds on the national forest within Kittitas and Chelan Counties.

The Forest Order includes the Cle Elum, Wenatchee River, Entiat and Chelan Ranger Districts.

Effective at 1 a.m. on Friday, July 26, building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire, or stove fire, including a fire made from briquettes, will be prohibited with certain exceptions. This order is the result of increasing fire danger in national forest areas within Kittitas and Chelan Counties.

Certain designated or developed campgrounds are exempt from this order, as are some other special sites such as group camps and summer homes under permit. Please visit or call the appropriate ranger station to obtain information on these sites.

Most locales within the following congressionally-designated wilderness areas are also exempt from this order: Alpine Lakes, Henry M. Jackson, Glacier Peak, Lake Chelan Sawtooth Wilderness Areas.  However, some locations within those listed wilderness areas have standing campfire restrictions.  Please contact the appropriate ranger station for specific fire regulations pertaining to wilderness areas.

The Cle Elum Ranger District Forest Order restricting campfires and exempt areas can be viewed at http://www.fs.usda.gov/goto/clelumfire The Forest Order for the Wenatchee River, Entiat and Chelan Ranger Districts can be found at http://www.fs.usda.gov/goto/chelanfire.

Persons using or maintaining pressurized liquid gas stoves or an enclosed solid fuel fire using a wick are also exempt from this order.  This order will remain in effect until further notice.

Fire managers on the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest remind hikers, campers and recreationists to be extremely careful with any use of fire in the outdoors this season. Escaped campfires are the leading cause of human-caused wildland fires on the Okanogan-Wenatchee N.F. Campfires typically become problems when campers fail to completely extinguish them before leaving campsites.

 Contact these Okanogan-Wenatchee N.F. offices for more information: Cle Elum Ranger Station, 509-852-1100; Wenatchee River Ranger Station, 509-548-2550; Entiat Ranger Station, 509-784-4700; and Chelan Ranger Station 509-682-4900.