Campfire Permits and Fire Restrictions


Current Fire Restrictions

Forest Order 05-07-00-20-05 Fire Use Restrictions

Los Padres National Forest officials announced that fire restrictions will be raised throughout the Forest effective May 12, 2020. These restrictions will affect the use of campfires, stoves, smoking materials and internal combustion engines, and will remain in effect until the end of fire season in late autumn. 

These restrictions are in response to the increasing potential for a wildland fire start in areas where significant late season rainfall produced a large grass crop and an abundance of fine fuels.

Effective May 12, the following restrictions will be in effect:

  • No open fires, campfires or charcoal fires will be permitted outside of developed recreation sites or designated Campfire Use Sites (list attached), even with a valid California Campfire Permit. Lanterns and portable stoves using gas, jellied petroleum or pressurized liquid fuel will be permitted, but only with a valid California Campfire Permit, which is available free-of-charge on the Forest website and at any U.S. Forest Service office. Forest visitors must clear all flammable material for five feet in all directions from their camp stove, have a shovel available, and ensure that a responsible person attends the stove at all times during use
  • Smoking is prohibited, except within an enclosed vehicle, building, or a designated Campfire Use Site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable material.
  • Internal combustion engines may be operated only on roads or designated trails. This restriction is in effect year-round. Please make sure your engine is tuned, operating properly, and has an approved spark arrester.
  • Fireworks – even the “safe and sane” variety – are not permitted at any time or in any location within the Forest.

For a list of Developed Recreation Sites and Campfire Use Sites in Los Padres National Forest, or further information regarding Fire-Safe Camping, visit or contact the U.S. Forest Service district office nearest you.

Campfire Permits

California Campfire Permits are now available at: Watch the video and follow the insturctions to obtain a permit. Fill the information out on the permit, print it out and take it with you. Permit is currently required to use portable stoves using gas, jellied petroleum or pressurized liquid fuel in Campfire Use Sites (developed car campgrounds). Wood and charcoal fires are not allowed anywhere in the Los Padres National Forest. Portable stoves using gas, jellied petroleum or pressurized liquid fuel are not allowed in the backcountry. 

You can also go to any Forest Service, CALFIRE, or Bureau of Land Management office during business hours to obtain a permit.

Regulations governing campfires can change with weather conditions and the seasons. To protect yourself and the forest, before each visit, check with the Forest Service office nearest to your destination for current restrictions.

You can help protect the National Forests from wildfires by knowing and following the rules for the safe use of fire. You must have a California Campfire Permit to use a stove or lantern outside a Developed Recreation Area or Campfire Use Site. The permit is your agreement to follow restrictions and regulations in effect.

Your California Campfire Permit is valid until the end of the calendar year; it may be used in any National Forest in California.

During certain times of the year, it is necessary to impose restrictions on campfires and other open flame fires due to high fire danger. It is your responsibility to know what the current restrictions are for the area that you plan to visit.

Internal combustion engines may be operated only on roads or designated trails. (This restriction is in effect year-round)

Spark arresters are required on all off-highway vehicles, chainsaws, and other internal combustion engines and equipment. (This restriction is in effect at all times of the year)

A permit is required for all welding, grinding, cutting, or use of explosives. (This restriction is in effect at all times of the year)

The use of tracer ammunition is prohibited. (This restriction is in effect at all times of the year)

Fireworks are prohibited in Los Padres National Forest. (This restriction is in effect at all times of the year)


Ranger Stations and Visitor Centers

Mt. Pinos Ranger District

(temporarily closed)

34580 Lockwood Valley Rd.
Frazier Park, CA 93225
Phone: (805) 865-6204 (available by phone Mon-Fri, 8-4:30)

Ojai Ranger District

(temporarily closed)

1190 E. Ojai Ave.
Ojai, CA 93023
Phone: (805) 448-4710 (available by phone Mon-Fri, 8-4:30)

Wheeler Gorge Visitor Center

(temporarily closed)

17017 Maricopa Highway
Ojai, CA 93023
Open Sat/Sun 9:00am-3:00pm

Santa Barbara Ranger District

(temporarily closed)

3505 Paradise Rd.
Santa Barbara, CA 93105
Phone: (805) 448-4710 (available by phone Mon-Fri, 8-4:30)

Santa Lucia Ranger District

(temporarily closed)

1616 No.Carlotti Dr.
Santa Maria, CA 93454
Phone: (805) 448-6487 (available by phone Mon-Fri, 8-4:30)

Big Sur Multi-Agency Vistor Center

(temporarily closed)

Big Sur, CA
(831) 667-2315

Monterey Ranger District

(temporarily closed)

406 So. Mildred
King City, CA 93930
Phone:  (831) 242-0619 (available by phone Mon-Fri, 8-4:30)