Statewide Fire Ban Impacting Campers

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Earlier this week the extreme fire danger across Colorado prompted Gov. John Hickenlooper to ban all private fireworks and some outdoor burning.

The open fire ban applies to the entire state and could impact campers.

Much of the Eastern Plains are in high fire danger. The western half also is in high and extreme fire danger.

The only place campfires are allowed in Colorado is in a developed campsite with a metal fire ring. The Forest Service says that’s a maintained and regulated fire ring that allows for safer burning.

In other parts of the forest it’s just too easy for the fire to get out of control, or embers to fly away.

“There are places where people can just drive off, and where there is some disperse camping, where people have camped before, where there are fire rings made out of rocks. That is not a developed campfire ring and fires are not allowed there,” a Forest Service official said.

At the Dillon Ranger District some backpackers have asked about fires, but have been told in undeveloped areas the answer is no and will be until the fire ban is lifted.

In Southern Colorado several counties have also placed fire restrictions. Many of those are Stage I fire restrictions. For the most part the restrictions prohibits open burning, excepting fires and campfires within permanently constructed fire grates in developed campgrounds and picnic grounds, charcoal grills and wood burning stoves at private residences in areas cleared of all flammable materials.

For a full list of restrictions and what they include, click on the link below or go to "Find it."