Campfire Permits and Current Fire Restrictions

Date: Updated May 26, 2022

Current Fire Restrictions for Los Padres National Forest - forest-wide

Forest Order 05-07-00-22-08 Fire Use Restrictions - Expires 1-31-2023

In response to the increasing potential for a wildland fire start, Los Padres National Forest officials announced that fire restrictions will be implemented throughout the Forest effective May 27, 2022. These restrictions will affect the use of campfires, stoves, smoking materials, and internal combustion engines, and will remain in effect until January 31, 2023. 

Effective May 27, 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, 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 can be obtained free-of-charge at the Ready For Wildfire website. 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 always attends the stove 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.

• Recreational target shooting is prohibited within Los Padres National Forest except for the Winchester Canyon Gun Club and Ojai Valley Gun Club that operate under special use permits.

Los Padres National Forest prohibits campfires in Santa Barbara front country

All campfires are now prohibited on National Forest System lands in the Santa Barbara front country due to the increasing fire danger and the potential threat to downslope communities. This prohibition will remain in effect through Feb 24, 2024.

Over the past 15 years, eight large wildfires have directly impacted the front country communities of Goleta, Santa Barbara, Montecito, Summerland and Carpinteria. Extreme fire weather events are now occurring year-round and are compounded by the long-term, severe drought affecting Central and So. California.

Front country visitors possessing a valid CA Campfire Permit will be permitted to use portable lanterns or stoves that run on propane, jellied petroleum, or pressurized liquid fuel.

Visitors are encouraged to call the Forest Supervisor’s Office or the local Ranger Station for more information on conditions and restrictions.

  • Supervisor’s Office – (805) 448-6487
  • Ojai Ranger District – (805) 448-6487
  • Santa Barbara District - (805) 448-6487
  • Mt. Pinos Ranger District – (661) 805-1057
  • Santa Lucia Ranger District – (805) 865-0416
  • Monterey Ranger District – (831) 242-0619

Campfire Permits

California Campfire Permits are available at www.readyforwildfire.org. Watch the video and follow the instructions to obtain a permit. Fill the information out on the permit, print it out and take it with you. Permit is currently required to have a wood or charcoal fire outside of a devleoped Campfire Use Site or to use a portable stove using gas, jellied petroleum or pressurized liquid outside of a developed Campfire Use Site.

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.

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)

YOU CAN BE HELD LIABLE FOR THE COST OF SUPPRESSION AND DAMAGES OF A WILDLAND FIRE THAT YOU CAUSE