State lifts campfire ban

2:23 pm August 18th, 2014

A ban on campfires in state parks in western Washington has been lifted.
State parks officials announced the change Aug. 15 because of changing weather conditions, including recent heavy rain. But park managers have the discretion to restrict campfires in campgrounds, based on their assessment of conditions, which could change quickly, officials said.
Campfires are allowed only in approved fire pitsy. Park managers may also require smaller fires than are normally acceptable.
“We understand how important campfires are to our visitors’ camping experience,” said state parks director Don Hoch. “Even with the recent rains, we are still concerned about the possibility of wildfire. We urge everyone to use extreme caution and to let our staff know if they encounter any hazardous conditions in state parks. This summer’s fire season has been unprecedented, and we appreciate everyone’s understanding.”
Easing of the burn ban followed an announcement Aug. 15 by the state commissioner of public lands and the state Department of Natural Resources (DNR) that adjusted the current statewide burn ban to allow for recreational campfires in western Washington. That agency has fire protection responsibility for nearly 13 million acres statewide, including most state parks. The ban originally was scheduled to last until Sept. 30.
Campfires also are allowed in national parks, which operate separately from the state system.

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