Letters From the West

Fire agencies prohibit campfires and smoking on public lands



Fires and smoking will be prohibited outside of designated campsites and picnic areas on federal and state public lands beginning Thursday.

Federal and state fire officials put the restrictions in place due to the hot, dry conditions and very high fire danger in southwest and central Idaho.

The areas include private and agency lands protected by the Boise, Payette, and Sawtooth National Forests; Idaho Department of Lands Forest Protection Districts, Southern Idaho Timber Protection Association, and Bureau of Land Management.

Under the Stage 1 regulation campfires and smoking are prohibited on the restricted state and federally managed lands, roads and trails outside city boundaries. People using fire pans within one quarter mile of the south side Main Salmon River west of the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness to the confluence of the Little Salmon River are exempt.

For more information go to the Idaho Fire Restrictions Page.

Rocky Barker is the energy and environment reporter for the Idaho Statesman and has been writing about the West since 1985. He is the author of Scorched Earth How the Fires of Yellowstone Changed America and co-producer of the movie Firestorm: Last Stand at Yellowstone, which was inspired by the book and broadcast on A&E Network. He also co-authored the Flyfisher's Guide to Idaho and the Wingshooter's Guide to Idaho with Ken Retallic. He also was on the Statesman’s team that covered the Sen. Larry Craig sex scandal, which was one of three Pulitzer Prize finalists in breaking news in 2007. The National Wildlife Federation awarded him its Conservation Achievement Award.

Posted in Letters from the West