NEVADA CITY, CALIF. (July 31, 2023) — Tahoe National Forest is implementing Stage 1 fire restrictions starting Aug. 1 due to high fire danger from persistent hot and dry weather conditions. Under these restrictions, the public can still maintain a campfire in established fire rings within designated developed campgrounds and day-use sites, but not outside of those areas. 

wood and charcoal fires are only allowed in metal fire rings and grills at designated developed recreation sites

“Implementing fire restrictions is a proactive measure to ensure we as fire managers are doing our part to prioritize the safety of those that choose to live and recreate on the Tahoe National Forest,” said Fire Management Officer Kyle Jacobson. “Restricting fires in undeveloped areas helps protect our forest and surrounding communities during these overly dry and hot periods each year.” 

The decision to go into fire restrictions is based on a variety of factors. Forest managers use several criteria to determine when to implement restrictions, including current and predicted weather, fuel moisture, fire activity levels and available firefighting resources. 

Under Stage 1 restrictions, the following are prohibited Aug. 1 through Nov. 1, 2023: 

  • Building or maintaining a fire, campfire, or charcoal briquette fire outside of established fire rings within designated developed campgrounds and picnic areas as listed in Exhibit A
  • Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a designated campground or recreation area, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable material. 
  • Operating an internal combustion engine off paved, gravel or dirt National Forest System roads and trails, except within the Prosser Pits Developed Off-Highway Vehicle Area and boats on a water surface.

Regardless of conditions and time of year, we must remain vigilant at all times to avoid human-caused wildfires. Help protect our forests, firefighters, and communities by following these principals when out on forested lands: 

  • Campfires: Attend your campfire at all times. Ensure your fire is completely extinguished—drown with water (NOT dirt), stir with your shovel, drown again, and feel for any heat using the back of your hand. Continue this process until no heat remains. 
  • Stoves: If using pressurized or bottled liquid fuel stoves, lanterns, or heating devices, use in barren areas with at least 3 feet of clearance from grasses and other debris that may catch fire. Prevent stoves from tipping. 
  • Vehicles: When traveling, ensure your chains are properly connected. The hot underside of the vehicle and dragging chains can start a fire. Stick to driving on designated roads and trails and be careful to not park your car or OHV in tall, dry, vegetation, including grass. The Tahoe National Forest Motor Vehicle Use Map can be found here
  • Spark Arrestors: Ensure that all internal or external combustion engines have a spark arresting device properly installed, maintained and in effective working order. 
  • Flammable Items: Fireworks are prohibited on all national forests year-round, leave them and all other pyrotechnic devices at home. Always use caution with smoking. Extinguish all smoking materials dead out on bare soil. Pack out all cigarette butts and filters. 

The full Forest Order and list of designated developed recreation sites can be found here