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Inyo National Forest fire restrictions in effect starting August 4

August 4th, 2018 by Eric, Mono Lake Intern

Starting today, fire restrictions are in effect for the Inyo National Forest. These restrictions are similar to those already in place on BLM land and will be in effect until further notice. Fire restrictions are put in place each year to protect local communities and public lands from wildfire.

Looking toward the Sierra crest from the South Tufa parking area in July, when a thick layer of smoke obscured the normally picturesque view. Photo by Eric Bergdoll.

Restrictions include:

  • No campfires, briquette barbecues, or stove fires are allowed outside of designated developed recreation sites and specifically posted campsites or areas.
  • Those with a valid California Campfire Permit (available free of charge at visitor centers or online here) are not exempt from these prohibitions, but are allowed to use portable stoves/lanterns using gas, jellied petroleum, or pressurized liquid fuel.
  • No fireworks. It is prohibited to possess or discharge fireworks of any type.
  • No smoking, except in an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter cleared of all flammable material or barren.
  • No welding or using open-flame torches (without permit).
  • Use of exploding targets, such as Binary Explosive targets and tracer rounds while shooting, is both a fire hazard and illegal. Steel-core ammunition can also greatly increase the chance of wildfire.
  • Prevent vehicle-related fires by maintaining proper tire pressure, ensuring adequate tire tread, and checking brakes for overheating. Avoid traveling or parking on brush or grass. Ensure that chains are not dragging while towing.
  • Motorcycles, ATVs, and chainsaws require an approved spark arrestor.

While some fires do start due to natural causes, most are caused by humans. Thankfully, simple steps can be taken to help prevent human-caused wildfires. More information on the prevention of wildfires can be found here.

Even in designated campgrounds it is important to practice fire safety. Never leave a fire unattended and be sure to “drown, stir, and feel” when extinguishing your campfire. If it is not cool to the touch, it is not out.

The Mono Lake Committee offers our sincere condolences to those who have been affected by this summer’s wildfire season, especially to the families and friends of the firefighters who have been injured or lost fighting these fires.

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