Fire safety a must for summer

Restrictions in place on Game and Fish lands

7/18/2022 7:53:31 PM

Cheyenne - Fire danger remains high throughout Wyoming due to hot, dry temperatures. To help protect wildlife habitat and other public lands, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department has implemented fire restrictions on many department-managed properties where people camp and recreate. 

Anyone planning a trip to a wildlife habitat management area or public access area can check a comprehensive listing of fire restrictions on the Game and Fish fire ban webpage. Restrictions are updated automatically as soon as they are set in place. Restrictions also are displayed on individual WHMA and PAA webpages.

Adhering to fire restrictions is one of the ways the public can help prevent forest fires, which in dry years can be catastrophic. Game and Fish’s Ray Bredehoft, chief of the Habitat and Access Branch, said the mid-summer hot and dry climate increases the possibilities of fires caused by campfires, not only at WHMAs and PAAs but on all lands open to the public in the state. 

“An action as simple as leaving a campfire’s warm ashes or littering a still-smoldering cigarette can cause a fire on the landscape. In July and August, they can grow quickly,” Bredehoft said. “Remaining cautious with anything that has an open flame or can burn, including stoves, matches and lighters to name a few, is extremely important for Wyoming’s habitat and wildlife.”

Campfires, stoves and other incendiary camping supplies are permitted on WHMAs as long as there are no restrictions or a fire ban is in place. Campers must ensure the place they choose to have a fire does not threaten, cause damage, burn any property on the WHMA and must always remain under control. 

“If allowed, campfires need to be attended at all times and be completely extinguished,” Bredehoft said. “This includes smoking materials like cigarettes.”

Littering and fireworks are not permitted on WHMAs. Campers and day users should review all regulations for WHMAs and PAAs on the Game and Fish website before setting up camp. 

To ensure a campfire is completely extinguished, campers need to have plenty of water on hand. To make sure a fire is out:

  • Allow wood to burn completely to ash.
  • Pour lots of water on the fire to drown all embers.
  • Pour water until the hissing sound stops.
  • Scrape sticks and logs to remove any embers.
  • Stir the ashes and embers with a shovel until everything is wet and cold to the touch.

(Sara DiRienzo, Public Information Officer - (

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