OLYMPIA – On July 8, 2023, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) announced restrictions to protect the public and reduce wildfire risk. The restrictions affect campfires, target shooting, and other activities to reduce risk of wildfire on state wildlife and water access areas.
“We all have a part to play in preventing wildfires, and we’re urging visitors enjoying Washington’s great outdoors this summer to be a part of the solution,” said Cynthia Wilkerson, WDFW’s Lands Division Manager. “By recreating responsibly and following wildfire safety restrictions, visitors can help preserve public recreation lands, wildlife habitat, public health, and safety for local communities.”
Starting July 7, restrictions prohibit visitors to eastern Washington WDFW-managed lands from:
- Making fires or campfires, including those in fire rings. Personal camp stoves and lanterns fueled by propane, liquid petroleum, or liquid petroleum gas are allowed.
- Discharging firearms for target shooting or other recreational purposes, aside from lawful hunting, unless otherwise posted, with the following exception: Target shooting is permitted from sunrise to 10 a.m. through Aug. 15, only at two Department shooting ranges:
- Methow Shooting Range, Methow Wildlife Area Unit
- Asotin Creek Shooting Range, Asotin Creek Wildlife Area Unit
- Note: Starting Aug. 16 through Sept. 15, restrictions prohibit discharging firearms for target shooting anywhere on WDFW-managed lands (including the previously mentioned target shooting ranges) in eastern Washington, unless otherwise
- Smoking, except in an enclosed vehicle. Do not throw lit cigarettes out your window.
- Welding and operating chainsaws, including the use of an acetylene torch or other open flame.
- Operating a motor vehicle away from developed roads. Parking is permitted within designated parking areas, including developed campgrounds and trailheads; and in areas without vegetation that are within 10 feet of roadways.
All restrictions will remain in effect until further notice except for the target shooting restriction, which runs through Sept. 15. Any changes to these regulations will be posted to WDFW’s wildfire information web page.
Fireworks are prohibited year-round on all WDFW-managed lands around the state. Throwing a lit cigarette or any other burning material from a motor vehicle on a state highway is also prohibited year-round.
WDFW manages more than a million acres of land and hundreds of water access areas throughout the state. By actively managing lands, restoring habitats, and preserving wild places, the Department serves as stewards for Washington’s natural places, protecting the state’s land and water for its human and wildlife.