Kaibab National Forest, Grand Canyon National Park to implement - Tucson News Now

Kaibab National Forest, Grand Canyon National Park to implement additional fire restrictions

(Source: U.S. Forest Service - Kaibab National Forest) (Source: U.S. Forest Service - Kaibab National Forest)
GRAND CANYON NP, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

The U.S. Forest Service and National Park Service will implement additional fire restrictions, also known as Stage II fire restrictions, across the North Kaibab Ranger District, and the South Rim, North Rim and Inner Canyon of Grand Canyon National Park beginning at 8 a.m. this Friday, June 8.

Visitors should be mindful that these new fire restrictions will limit certain activities and will remain in effect until rescinded, which typically occurs after significant and widespread moisture arrives and fire danger levels subside.

As a reminder, the Williams and Tusayan Ranger Districts are already in Stage II fire restrictions and will also remain in effect until lifted. 

Under the Stage II fire restrictions to be implemented Friday across the North Kaibab Ranger District, the following are prohibited:

  • Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire, charcoal, coal, or wood stove fire, including fires in developed campgrounds and improved sites.
  • Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building.
  • Discharging a firearm except while engaged in a lawful hunt pursuant to state, federal, or tribal laws and regulations.
  • Operating chainsaws or any internal combustion engine between the hours of 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. 
  • Welding or operating acetylene or other torches with an open flame.
  • Using an explosive (It is always illegal to use any explosives or fireworks on National Forest lands).

Under the Stage II fire restrictions to be implemented Friday across Grand Canyon National Park, the following are prohibited:

  • All wood burning and charcoal fires, campfires, warming fires, and charcoal barbecues will be prohibited throughout the Park. The restriction encompasses the entire Park including all campgrounds and residential areas to include: Phantom Ranch, Cottonwood Campground and Indian Garden Campground.
  • Park stores will not sell firewood during this time. 
  • These restrictions include all backcountry permit holders and thru-hikers. 

Exemptions to the Stage II fire restrictions on the North Kaibab Ranger District include the following:

  • Using a device fueled solely by liquid petroleum or LPG fuels that can be turned on and off. Such devices can only be used in an area that is barren or cleared of all overhead and surrounding flammable materials within 3 feet of the device. 
  • Operating generators with an approved spark arresting device within an enclosed vehicle or building or in an area that is barren or cleared of all overhead and surrounding flammable materials within 3 feet of the generator.
  • Operating motorized vehicles in compliance with the Kaibab National Forest’s Travel Management regulations. Parking off any road must be in an area that is barren or cleared of all overhead and surrounding flammable materials within 3 feet of the vehicle. 

Exemptions to the Stage II fire restrictions on Grand Canyon National Park include the following:

  • Pressurized liquid gas stoves, lanterns, and heaters with shut-off devices are allowed.
  • Boats within the Colorado River corridor are exempted from the Stage II restriction. 

On the Kaibab Plateau, National Park Service and U.S. Forest Service fire managers work together as the North Zone Interagency Fire Management Program. Here North Zone Fire Managers use fire restrictions to help prevent unwanted, human-caused fires and to limit the exposure of visitors during periods of potentially dangerous fire conditions. Implementation of fire restrictions normally occurs based on a combination of factors that are carefully measured. These factors include but are not limited to the following: 

  • Current and predicted weather patterns
  • Fuel moistures, a variety of science-based indices, and fire activity levels
  • Available firefighting resources 
  • Additional restrictions may be applied anytime conditions warrant 

On National Forest Lands, fire restrictions typically remain in effect until the area covered by the restrictions receives significant precipitation, at which time they will be rescinded. However, Grand Canyon National Park operates under Stage I Fire Restrictions year round, except in certain circumstances where fire managers must increase to Stage II fire restrictions because the criteria listed above dictates a need to do so.

Visitors should use extra caution when recreating on all public lands when fire danger is increased. Fire managers would also like to remind visitors that having a campfire on the National Forest or National Park while under fire restrictions is a violation of law requiring a mandatory appearance in federal court, consequent fines, and possible jail time. 

As a reminder, these fire restrictions apply to the entire Kaibab National Forest and Grand Canyon National Park. Additionally, many city, state, and county agencies implement similar restrictions, so members of the public should check with the appropriate agency on any restrictions applying to privately-owned property or other lands not within the jurisdictional boundaries of any Federal Land Management Agency.

Know Before You Go! Members of the public can find additional information through the following: 

Copyright 2018 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

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