Violation Notices Issued for Pawnee National Grassland Fire

Contact(s): Reghan Cloudman

Greeley, Colo. (March 1, 2012) – After the investigation of a fire that burned January 29, 2012, on the Pawnee National Grassland (PNG) and private land, two violation notices have been issued: 36CFR 261-5B Firing Tracer Bullets and 36 CFR 261.9A Damaging Property of the United States. Each of these violations carries a $525 fine to a maximum of $5,000. Anyone found guilty of causing a fire on National Forest System lands could also be held responsible for the cost of fire suppression and resource damage rehabilitation.  

This serves as a reminder to be aware of the rules and regulations that apply to whatever activity you take part in on the PNG. Forest Service staff is seeing an increase of first or second-time visitors to the Grassland, and the number of visitors continues to increase as well. Just last Saturday over 200 public contacts were conducted by Forest Service Law Enforcement Officers.

Visitors are asked to avoid congestion and safely disperse from other users when enjoying the PNG. Since many of the newer visitors are recreationally shooting, here are some shooting regulations:

  • Do not fire any tracer bullets or incendiary ammunition.
  • Shoot further than 150 yards from a residence, building, campsite, developed recreation area or occupied area. (This includes the Pawnee Bird Tour pull outs.)
  • Do not shoot across or on a National Forest System Road or adjacent body of water.
  • Do not shoot in any manner or place where any person or property is exposed to injury or damage as a result of such discharge.
  • Only shoot at cardboard/paper targets, manufactured metallic targets, or manufactured thrown-type clay targets. (Anything else, even if you did not bring it out but are using it, is illegal.)
  • Do not possess an open container of an alcoholic beverage while discharging a fire arm.
  • There is a closure area located in Township 8N, Range 63W, Section 7. The area is closed for ¼ mile south of Weld County Road 96 and ¼ mile west of County Road 63.

Remember when shooting to only use the approved targets with a safe backstop – that includes not shooting at trash left by others. Make sure to clean up your targets and do not to attach targets on trees, fences, water tanks, windmills or other improvements. Be aware of livestock and other grassland visitors when shooting and keep your distance. For more recreational shooting information, check the web at Regulations for other activities can be found on the web at call visitor information services at 970-346-5000.