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Central Idaho Fire Restrictions Area implements Stage I Fire Restrictions


SALMON, Idaho (KIFI) - The U.S. Forest Service, Idaho Department of Lands, and Bureau of Land Management in east-central Idaho will begin Stage 1 fire restrictions, effective at just after midnight (12:01 am) on Tuesday, July 26, 2022. Stage 1 fire restrictions apply to federal, state, state endowment, private forestland and rangelands within the designated area.

The Central Idaho Fire Restrictions Area encompasses those portions of Custer County that are north and east of the Sawtooth National Recreation Area excluding the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness.  That portion of Lemhi County that is not federal land designated as wilderness. 

Stage 1 fire restrictions apply to campfires and smoking. Under Stage 1 restrictions, the following acts are prohibited:

  1. 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 fire structure (see definition).'
  2. 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.

Exceptions to the above Stage 1 prohibitions include the following:

  1. Persons with a written permit that specifically authorizes the otherwise prohibited act.
  2. Persons using a fire solely fueled by liquid petroleum or LPG fuels. Such devices, including propane campfires, may be used only in an area cleared of flammable material. Persons using a stove fire (defined in the order).
  3. Persons using stove fires with a chimney of at least five (5) feet in length and employing a spark arrester with a maximum mesh screen opening of ¼ inch.
  4. Persons using metal fire pans* (see definition) within ¼ mile of:
    • a. The Salmon River from the Corn Creek launch site to Vinegar Creek.
    • b. The Middle Fork of the Salmon River.
    • c. The Selway River from the Paradise boat launch to Race Creek.
    • d. The Snake River from Hells Canyon Dam to the City of Lewiston.
    • e. Salmon River from Vinegar Creek to its mouth at the Snake River below the mean high-water mark.
    • f. South Fork of the Snake River from Palisades Dam to Mike Walker Boat Access.
    • g. Henry’s Fork of the Snake River from St. Anthony to Mike Walker Boat Access.
    • *A metal fire pan with sides at least three inches high with a metal grate on top.  Pack-out of ashes is required.  Any Federal, State, or local officer or member of an organized rescue or firefighting force in the performance of an official duty
    • Fire Pan and Ash Removal:  An approved fire pan is a durable, metal pan at least 12-inches x 12-inches wide, with at least a 3-inch lip around its outer edge and sufficient to contain a fire and its remains. Visitors must elevate fire pans off the ground to prevent scorching of the soil. If the fire pan does not have legs to elevate it, rocks must be placed underneath the corners of the fire pan. All ash must be removed and carried out of the river corridor in a sealed container or durable bag.
  5. Private landowners using charcoal (disposed of properly) or propane barbecues on their own lands.
  6. Persons conducting activities in those designated areas where the activity is specifically authorized by written posted notice.
  7. Any federal, state, or local officer or member of an organized rescue or firefighting force, in the performance of an official duty.

Under these restrictions, campfires are allowed only in recreation sites within metal/concrete fire pits. The restrictions will remain in effect until there is a significant change in fire danger.

Fire danger across east-central Idaho is VERY HIGH. Rangelands and forested lands at all elevations are dry.  Fire management officials are hopeful that by initiating Stage 1 fire restrictions, there will be fewer human-caused wildland fires. 

Article Topic Follows: Idaho

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