Every year forest conditions change and this year it is more important than ever that forest visitors recognize the current fire danger on federal lands. Above average temperatures, combined with little to no precipitation in the past several months have left forests tinder-dry. If you are headed out to enjoy your public lands, please be extra cautious to avoid accidentally starting a wildfire.
Stage 1 Fire Restrictions have been implemented for all lands below 3,000 feet in elevation for Boundary, Bonner, Kootenai, Shoshone, Benewah and Latah Counties. The following are prohibited:
- Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire or stove fire except within a designated recreation site, or on their own land, and only within an owner-provided structure.
- Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle, building, or designated recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.
Fireworks are prohibited on all national forest and Bureau of Land Management lands year-round.
Campfire Safety. Even if it’s “green,” please practice good sense by using caution with fire and smoking at all times, in all places. Drown, stir and check your campfire for heat with your bare hand. ALL fires must be DEAD OUT when left unattended and before leaving the site.
Responsible Motorized Use. Please stay on designated routes and obtain the appropriate travel maps before you go. On the Coeur d’Alene River, Bonners Ferry, Sandpoint and Priest Lake Ranger Districts visitors should carry the FREE Motorized Vehicle Use Maps, available at Forest Service Offices throughout north Idaho. No mud bogging is allowed anywhere on National Forest System lands. Idaho traffic laws apply to all motor vehicles including off-highway vehicles (OHVs) and motorcycles of all types.
Keep it Clean to Avoid Bear Encounters! Bears often develop a strong liking for human and pet foods. Store food in hard-sided vehicles or bear-proof containers; keep sleeping areas, tents and sleeping bags free from food and food odors; and wash up, change clothes and remove all scented articles nearby before going to bed. Wild bears avoid people, but bears conditioned to human food can be aggressive. These guidelines are a good idea anywhere in north Idaho, but on national forest system lands north of the Clark Fork, Lake Pend Oreille and the Pend Oreille River proper food storage is required! Visit the forest’s Food Storage Requirements web page for more information.
Camping. Camping is allowed for up to 14 days within any 30-day period in developed recreation sites; undeveloped recreation sites; campgrounds; wilderness areas; and other general forest areas (previous limit was up to 14 days within a 45-day period). Drown, stir and check your campfire for heat with your bare hand. ALL fires must be DEAD OUT when left unattended and before leaving the site.
Recreation Information. Visit the Idaho Panhandle National Forests’ “Recreation” web page to check the status of your favorite site! For additional information on BLM recreations sites visithttp://www.blm.gov/id/st/en/fo/coeur_d_alene/recreation_sites_.html.
For more information on the Idaho Panhandle National Forests please visit our website, or contact your local Forest Service office. For information about BLM lands in the area, visithttp://www.blm.gov/id/st/en/fo/coeur_d_alene.html.