Campfires Banned In Parts Of North Cascades National Park Complex

The National Park Service has placed a ban on campfires in portions of Lake Chelan National Recreation Area and North Cascades National Park.

Until further notice campfires are banned in the following campgrounds and picnic areas (listed, roughly, north to south):

Bridge Creek, Bridge Creek Group, Bridge Creek Stock, Shady, Tumwater, High Bridge, Harlequin, Harlequin Group, Rainbow Falls, Purple Point, Purple Point Stock, Purple Point Overflow, Weaver Point, Manly Wham, and Flick Creek.

The ignition of wood, briquettes, or any fuel in fire pits, fire pans, barbecue grills, or other devices is prohibited in these areas until further notice. This ban in the middle and lower Stehekin Valley and the National Park Service-managed portion of Lake Chelan complements the ban imposed by the U.S. Forest Service along the lower portion of Lake Chelan and throughout the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest.

In the areas of Lake Chelan National Recreation Area and North Cascades National Park unaffected by this ban, campfires are permitted as usual. They must be in established fire pits in both designated frontcountry campgrounds and designated backcountry campsites. Campfires are not permitted in other areas.

Please exercise great caution with all fire. Ensure that all campfires are out and cold to the touch before leaving the area. Do not burn toilet paper. Do not discard cigarettes.

Comments

I was just there and the air pollution from forest fires was miserable. I couldn't see more than a mile or two up Lake Chelan. I read one assertion (whether true or not I don't know) that the air quality is worse than it was after the eruption of Mt. St. Helens.

It's been alleged that environmentalists have forced the Forest Service to mismanage forests, with one result being catastrophic and unnatural fires, by filing lawsuits when a forest proposes logging. I'd be interested in people's opinions on this controversy. (Undoubtedly there's no shortage of strong feelings on the subject.) Here are two recent items in The Wall Street Journal that allege, basically, that environmentalists learn of a logging plan and file suit to stop it on grounds that it imperils an endangered or threatened species, court action stymies the logging for years, and then the forest burns fiercely, killing the species the environmentalists claim their action will protect:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444165804578008211129317482.html?KEYWORDS=forest+fires

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390443884104577647903145409924.html

(This is based on my recollection of the op-ed piece, which unfortunately requires a subscription that I don't have to be able to reread it.)

Now, I'd be the first to admit that the op-ed pages of The Wall Street Journal regularly propound nonsensical allegations. I wouldn't accept anything published on them on faith. But these allegations have circulated elsewhere, and even Stewart Brand has asserted that both conservative skeptics' and environmentalists' adherence to scientific principles is porous. "I’m trying to convince the conservatives and the environmentalists to follow the science right across the board, not just where it’s convenient or supports their ideology,"
Brand said. Source: http://www.thesunmagazine.org/issues/429/environmental_heretic

Does anyone have any information either way?

P.S. Although the op-ed is truncated, the comments to it aren't, and some are interesting:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390443884104577647903145409924.html#articleTabs%3Dcomments

I haven't taken time to read the attachments, but think it's very safe to say that the real problem here (as with so many other national concerns these days) is one of extremism on all sides.

Moderation has become a dirty word in some circles. It hurts us all.

Stewart Brand is absolutely correct in his comment above.

Definitely agree. It's a dialogue of the deaf.

Lee, I like your moderation/anti-extremist tone. More becoming...

There are now fires burning on the slopes of Mt. Adams, Washington, alas. I mountain biked on the southeast side of Mt. St. Helens today and could see the plumes of smoke coming off Adams's west side. This is a spectacular area, i.e., the Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, and its trail access policy is fair and rational. Mountain bikes are allowed on some trails, and where they're not, neither are horses, "pets," or overnight camping. I can live with that.

You know the smoke is bad when you can't see Mt. Rainier from Puyallup, Washington, on a clear day. And that's how it's been for weeks now.

I will be so glad when we finally get our first good solid front this fall.