To help prevent wildfires, the Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management has placed Stage II Fire Restrictions across Southern Arizona. As of Friday, May 4, Coconino County, home to popular climbing area Priest Draw, will move from Stage I Fire Restrictions to Stage II Fire Restrictions. In the past, failure to comply with Fire Restrictions has resulted in temporary closures of recreational areas.
According the the Coconino National Forest website, Stage II Fire Restrictions prohibits:
- Fires, campfires, charcoal, coal, and wood stoves (except using a device that is solely fueled by liquid petroleum or LPG fuels that can be turned on and off in areas that are barren or cleared of all overhead and surrounding flammable materials within three feet of the device)
- Smoking (except within an enclosed vehicle or building)
- Using an explosives
- Possessing, discharging, or using any type of firework by pyrotechnic device. Fireworks are always prohibited.
- Operating a chainsaw or any other equipment powered by an internal combustion engine from the hours of 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. (except generators with an approved spark arresting device within an enclosed vehicle or building or in an area that is barren or cleared of all overhead and surrounding flammable materials within three feet of the generator).
- Welding or operating an acetylene or other torch with open flame.
- Operating or using any internal or external combustion engine without a spark arresting device properly installed, maintained, and in effective working order (this does not include motor vehicles. This is aimed at things such as landscaping tools).
- Discharging firearms, air rifles, or gas guns (except while engaged in a lawful hunt pursuant to state, federal or tribal laws and regulations).
- Possessing or using a motor vehicle off National Forest System roads. Vehicles must follow Travel Management Rule regulations and cannot drive/park over any vegetation at any time.