As hunters gear up for the opening weekend of deer season, the Douglas Forest Protective Association would like to remind all forest users to be cautious in wildland areas as fire season remains in effect. Fire officials say that it is important to know what fire restrictions are in place before heading to the woods and notes that specific fire restrictions vary between each ODF/Association district and National Forest lands.
Locally on the Douglas District, Public Use Restrictions remain in effect on all private, county, state, and BLM lands protected by DFPA. While the Public Use Restrictions do not restrict access to the forest, it does restrict or prohibit certain fire prone activities which could easily start a fire. These restrictions include:
- Smoking is prohibited in wildland areas, except within vehicles.
- Each vehicle traveling in wildland areas must have a shovel AND a 2 ½ pound or larger fire extinguisher or a gallon of water. ATV’s and motorcycles are required to have a 2 ½ pound or larger fire extinguisher.
- Campfires, warming fires, and cooking fires are only allowed within DFPA designated campgrounds. Portable cooking stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed elsewhere.
- DFPA Designated Campgrounds include: Cavitt Creek, Eagle View, Lone Pine, Millpond, Rock Creek, Susan Creek, Tyee, Amacher Park, Douglas County Fairgrounds, Pass Creek, Stanton Park, Chief Miwaleta, & Whistlers Bend.
- The use of chainsaws is allowed before 1:00 p.m. or after 8 p.m. Each saw must have a shovel and an 8 ounce or larger fire extinguisher. A one hour fire watch is required once the saw is done running for the day.
- Fireworks, exploding targets, tracer ammunition, and sky lanterns are prohibited.
In addition to DFPA’s Public Use Restrictions, private landowners may have additional fire restrictions or closures on their landholdings. Hunters and other forest users are urged to check with the landowner for the location they plan to recreate on to see if any additional closures or restrictions are in place through the landowner.
DFPA wishes all hunters a safe, productive, and fire free hunting season.