The good news: So far, your Independence Day weekend campfire in a designated campground with fire rings is not in danger of being banned.
But crackdowns are starting in dry areas east of the Cascades.
In the past few days, these fire restrictions have been announced:
- No burning is allowed on state Department of Natural Resources-protected lands east of the Cascades, July through September. The ban applies to all forest lands under DNR fire protection, which does not include federally owned lands. The ban has two exceptions: recreational fires in approved fire pits within designated state, county, municipal or other campgrounds; and gas or propane stoves and barbecue grills. “The seasonally dry weather creates a greater risk for wildfires,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark. “A burn ban helps to prevent them, and protects forests, habitat and property.”
- Effective Thursday, Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest is prohibiting campfires outside of developed campgrounds on the national forest within Chelan County. That includes the Chelan, Entiat and Wenatchee River ranger districts. Most locales within federal wilderness areas are exempt except for standing campfire restrictions. Pressurized liquid gas stoves are still allowed.
Last summer, pursuant to a DNR ban of all campfires on DNR-protected lands, Washington State Parks imposed a statewide ban on campfires in all its parks starting at the end of July and extending into mid-August.