July 4th Holiday Safety Reminders

Release Date: 

Contact(s): Reghan Cloudman

FORT COLLINS, Colo., June 29, 2020 – The Fourth of July holiday weekend is a great opportunity to get outdoors and celebrate our nation’s birthday by enjoying your public lands. Before you head out on the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests and Pawnee National Grassland there are several things you should know, including fire restrictions.

Visitors are reminded to do their part to help prevent wildfires. Fireworks are never allowed on National Forest System lands, so be sure to leave them at home. Currently the entire Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests and Pawnee National Grassland is in Stage 1 fire restrictions. Even in counties where there are no local fire restrictions this applies, including Grand and Larimer counties.

Under Stage 1 fire restrictions, forest visitors may not:

  • Build or maintain a fire or use charcoal, coal or wood stoves, except in permanent fire pits or fire grates within a developed recreation site (e.g., campgrounds where fees are charged and not dispersed campsites).
  • Smoke, except in an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site or while in an area at least three feet in diameter cleared of all flammable materials.
  • Use any internal or external combustion engine (including chainsaws) without a spark arresting device properly working and a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher and a round point shovel.
  • Weld or operate acetylene or other torch with open flame except in cleared areas of at least 10 feet in diameter and in possession of a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher.
  • Use explosives, including fireworks.

Fourth of July is one of the busiest weekends on the Forest and Grassland and that means visitors should plan to arrive at their destination as early as possible. Parking lots at trailheads and picnic areas can fill quickly, along with campgrounds. Reservable campsites are booked and first-come, first served sites will fill very early in the week. Be sure to have up-to-date maps with you to ensure you are on public land. Our Motor Vehicle Use Maps are a free resource that can help and are available for download at www.fs.usda.gov/goto/arp/maps. Many roads are open for the season, but some still remain closed due to wet or snowy conditions. Be sure to check the road status page at www.fs.usda.gov/goto/arp/roads.

Visitors are also urged to take the precautions recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) along with local health and safety guidance, including social distancing. Tips for preventing illnesses like the coronavirus are available from the CDC website. If an area is crowded, please find another location.

For additional information, visit us online at www.fs.usda.gov/arp, Twitter @usfsarp or www.facebook.com/usfsarp.