Forest Service fire restrictions


The US Forest Service today announced and signed an order to temporarily close developed recreation sites and an order to implement fire restrictions within the Forest Service’s Rocky Mountain Region to align with local, state and federal orders and guidelines to protect public health and safety. The region includes 24 national forests and grasslands across Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming.

“While we know that going outside provides forest and grassland visitors needed space, exercise and satisfaction, we are taking the risks presented by COVID-19 seriously,” said Eberlien. “We are providing some recreation opportunities where we can while protecting and keeping employees, the public and our vcommunities safe from the virus, as well as protecting and keeping communities and natural and cultural resources safe from unwanted human-caused wildfires.”

Recreation Closures
Developed recreation sites are temporarily closed while dispersed camping, hiking, and river uses are allowed, although discouraged. Closed developed recreation sites include campgrounds, day-use areas, picnic areas, and any other constructed facility amenities – such as potable water stations, fire rings/grills, picnic tables, restroom facilities with flush or vaulted toilets, and trashcans and trash collection services. Parking facilities, trails and trailheads remain open. Dispersed camping includes camping on a national forest or grassland where recreation facilities or services are not provided.

Forest and grassland visitors camping in dispersed recreation sites, hiking or embarking on river activities are encouraged to adhere to responsible safe-distancing guidelines.

Fire Restrictions
Effective immediately until rescinded, the following is prohibited:
!. Igniting, building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, including charcoal grills and barbecues, coal and wood-burning stoves, and sheepherder’s stoves.

2. Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle, trailer or building.

Fire restrictions enhance public safety, protect natural and cultural resources and help prevent humancaused wildfires.

Entering upon closed areas or igniting, building, maintaining, attending or using a fire or smoking on national forests and grasslands is a violation of Federal law and may result in consequent fines and possible jail time.

All offices are conducting business and providing virtual services.

For specific forest and grassland information, please visit the region’s forest and grassland directory.