The Santa Fe National Forest will lift campfire and smoking restrictions effective 8 a.m. Thursday, July 28, due to widespread rain across the forest and decreasing fire danger.
The forest implemented Stage I fire restrictions July 15 based on dry conditions and higher-than-normal temperatures.
Forest managers use several criteria to determine when to lift fire restrictions, including current and predicted weather, fuel moisture, fire activity levels and available firefighting resources. The arrival of monsoonal moisture has eased the dry conditions that led to restrictions and decreased fire danger to moderate.
“We want to thank our visitors over the last two weeks for complying with Stage I fire restrictions and helping us reduce fire danger by foregoing campfires in dispersed camping areas,” Forest Supervisor Maria T. Garcia said. “Campfires are the leading human cause of wildfire, and fire restrictions are sometimes necessary for public safety and the protection of natural resources. We are pleased that current conditions make it an appropriate time to lift the restrictions before the upcoming weekend.”
Although Stage I restrictions on campfires and smoking will be lifted, forest managers urge visitors to continue to use caution around campfires and other potential ignition sources by following campfire safety procedures. Violators of regulations that prohibit abandoning a campfire are subject to a fine and/or imprisonment. If an abandoned campfire causes a wildfire, violators can also be held responsible for fire suppression costs.