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Jan 11

Los Padres National Forest Fire Restrictions Lifted

Thanks to recent rains and rising moisture content in our forests, campfires and charcoal barbecues are once again allowed in the Los Padres National Forest as of January 11, 2016.  See the full announcement here: Current Fire Restrictions  _DSC1422 Check out PreventWildfireCA.gov for more information on campfire safety and to also download your own campfire permit, necessary for any campfire, bbq or camp stove operation in the Los Padres National Forests areas.

When visiting a Wilderness or other backcountry location, be sure to follow Leave No Trace principle number 5: MINIMIZE CAMPFIRE IMPACT

  -Remember, campfires can cause lasting impacts to the environment. Consider using a lightweight stove for cooking and enjoy a candle lantern for light.  Enjoy the stars!

-If you decide to have a fire, BUILD A MINIMUM IMPACT FIRE. Consider whether a fire makes good sense at your picnic or campsite. If a campfire is important to you:

  • Research or ask about pertinent regulations and campfire management techniques in the locale you plan to visit.
  • Judge the wind, weather, location, and wood availability. Decided whether it's safe and responsible to build a campfire.
  • Use established fire rings.  If you camp near an existing rock ring, use it instead of building a new one.  The most inviting fire rings are of a reasonable size and free of excess ashes, half-burned wood and trash.  Leave a fire ring that encourages others who want a fire to use it.
  • If you must build your own ring, keep it small and disperse rocks and completely cooled ash after you're done. Leave no trace!
-USE DEAD AND DOWNED WOOD
  • Keep fires small
  • Use only sticks and small branches from the ground that can be broken by hand (large downed wood plays an important role in  nutrition, water cycling and soil productivity, and provide habitat for wildlife.)
  • Firewood smaller than the diameter of your wrist breaks easily and burns completely to ash, making cleanup easier. Half-burned logs create a disposal issue and an eye-sore for the next visitor.
  • Travel away from your campsite to gather wood, so your site retains a natural appearance.
-MANAGE YOUR CAMPFIRE
  • Never leave your fire unattended.
  • Don't try to burn foil-lined packets, leftover food, or other garbage that would have to be removed later.
  • Burn the wood completely to ash: Stop feeding the fire, and give yourself and hour or more to add all the unburned stick ends.
  • Saturarte the ash with water.  Make sure it's cool to the touch and remove any trash.
  • Scatter all the ashes widely with a small shovel or pot lid.
  • Restore the appearance of the fire site.
In popular areas, leave a single, small, clean rock ring centered in the campsite. Dismantle and cleanup any extra fire rings.  If a fire grate is present, don't build or use a rock ring.  Leave the grate clean and ready for the next person.  In remote areas, clean up thoroughly and disguise the fire site to make it appear as natural and untouched as possible.

(adapted from the Leave No Trace handbook) https://lnt.org  

Roasting 'mallows

Roasting 'mallows

 

Thanks for reading!

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