Due to high fire danger and an abundance of dry grass and shrubbery, Zion National Park officially changed its fire restrictions to level two on June 1st. These new changes are due to an unextinguished fire that happened at Watchman Campground over the Memorial Day weekend. Park officials worry that current park conditions could lead to a large fire, due to the start of summer and the expected heat that comes with it,
This last Friday, The National Weather Service issued a red flag warning for Washington County. High winds, high temperatures, and a low level of humidity created a perfect storm for wildfires to start. These conditions, according to Zion National Park fire management officer Greg Bartin, could lead to large and uncontrolled fires within the Park. Bartin adds, though, that these kinds of restrictions are normal for the park. He stated, “[o]ut of an abundance of caution, Zion National Park decided in concert with our area partners that we would enter level two fire restrictions, which ban all campfires and all open flames.”
Below are the new guidelines issued by Zion National Park:
- The building, maintaining, or using a campfire, including charcoal, are prohibited in campgrounds, picnic areas.
- Grills and stoves that use petroleum fuels, such as Liquid Propane, are still allowed.
- Smoking in vegetated is not allowed
- Fireworks or other pyrotechnics are also prohibited. Those who violate this rule can be fined more than $5,000 and face up to 12 months of jail time.
These restrictions are expected to last until the monsoon season, which normally arrives in late August.
For information concerning fire restrictions in Zion National Park, call (435) 772-3256.