UPDATE: Fire Restrictions rescinded October 1, 2021.
New fire restrictions will be in place in the National Forests starting June 16, 2021. In Albany County and the surrounding Laramie area, this will affect the Laramie Range, the Snowy Range, and Vedauwoo, Pilot Hill, and Pole Mountain areas including all campgrounds and dispersed campsites. Click here to view the map of all affected areas. See the full press release below from the US Forest Service:
Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland to enter Stage 1 fire restrictions on June 16
Campfires are only allowed in USDA Forest Service approved and installed fire pits/grates, or gas-fueled devices with an on/off switch.
(LARAMIE, Wyo.) June 15, 2021 – Stage 1 fire restrictions will go into effect Wednesday, June 16, 2021 for the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland. This includes National Forest System lands located in Garfield, Grand, Jackson, Moffat, Rio Blanco, and Routt counties in northwest Colorado; Albany, Campbell, Carbon, Converse, Crook, Natrona, Niobrara, Platte, and Weston counties in Wyoming.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service has coordinated with all affected counties, state agencies, and neighboring federal land managers on the timing of the restrictions.
Going into restrictions is not taken lightly by the Forest Service. Restrictions are necessary due to dry fuel conditions, persistent fire weather patterns, and the danger of human-caused wildfires from recreation usage across the Forests and Grassland. Recent dry, windy, and hot weather conditions have resulted in an elevated potential for wildfires. Fire restrictions will help protect public health and safety, as well as natural resources.
The following prohibitions are in effect until further notice:
1. Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire or stove fire. This includes barbecues, grills, and portable braziers.
o Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire in constructed, permanent fire pits or fire grates within developed recreation sites and the use of portable stoves, lanterns using gas, jellied petroleum, pressurized liquid fuel or a fully enclosed (sheepherder type) stove with a ¼” spark arrester type screen is permitted.
2. Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable material.
3. Operating a chainsaw without a USDA or SAE approved spark arrester properly installed and in effective working order, a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher with a minimum rating of 2A kept with the operator, and one round point shovel with an overall length of at least 35 inches readily available for use.
4. Welding or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame except in cleared areas of at least 10 feet in diameter and in possession of a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher with a minimum rating of at least 2A.
5. Using an explosive.
Personal, portable wood or charcoal burning fire pits/rings, often made of stainless steel, are not allowed under these restrictions. Campfires are only allowed in USDA approved and installed fire pits/grates, or gas-fueled devices with an on/off switch.
Violation of these regulations is punishable as a class B misdemeanor, by a fine of not more than $5,000 for an individual or $10,000 for an organization, or imprisonment of not more than six months, or both. Anyone negligently or willfully starting a wildland fire could also be held responsible for the costs of that fire.
In addition to the restrictions listed above and nearing the Fourth of July holiday, Forest users are reminded that under no circumstances are fireworks allowed on federally-managed lands.
Forest staff will continue to monitor conditions to assess the need for further action, including additional restrictions if weather remains hot and dry and lessening restrictions if a wetter weather pattern develops.
Call or visit your local office for site-specific information.
- Brush Creek-Hayden Ranger District, Saratoga, Wyo., (307) 326-5258
- Douglas Ranger District, Douglas, Wyo., (307) 358-4690
- Hahns Peak-Bears Ears Ranger District, Steamboat Springs, Colo., (970) 870-2299
- Forest Supervisor’s Office & Laramie Ranger District, Laramie, Wyo., (307) 745-2300
- Parks Ranger District, Walden, Colo., (970) 723-2700
- Yampa Ranger District, Yampa, Colo., (970) 638-4516
Additional information may be found on our website or you can follow the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland on social media: @FS_MBRTB on Twitter or @FSMBRTB on Facebook.