National Forest offers Fourth of July weekend reminders

The Fourth of July is a perfect time to enjoy National Forest System lands. Visitors are encouraged to stay safe during the holiday weekend by following all fire restrictions, including not possessing or using fireworks.

“We expect a large number of people recreating across the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest over the Fourth of July weekend,” said Forest Supervisor Bill Dunkelberger. “Our highest priorities are ensuring public and employee safety and preventing human-caused wildfires.”

On Saturday, July 2, the Austin-Tonopah, Bridgeport, Carson, Ely, Mountain City-Ruby Mountains-Jarbidge, and Santa Rosa Ranger Districts will join the Spring Mountains National Recreation Area in Stage I fire restrictions. For details on what is prohibited, visit https://bit.ly/HTNFFireRestrictions. To learn more about fire restrictions, check out these frequently asked questions at http://bit.ly/FireRestrictionsFAQs.

For up-to-date information on fire restrictions across the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, Bureau of Land Management, and Nevada Division of Forestry, visit nevadafireinfo.org/restrictions-and-closures. In California, check with the appropriate land management agency for current fire restrictions.

The use or possession of fireworks and other pyrotechnic devices on NFS lands is prohibited and subject to confiscation and fines of up to $5,000 and/or six months in jail. In addition, anyone found responsible for starting a wildfire can be held civilly and criminally liable. For information about how to prevent wildfires, visit nevadafireinfo.org/prevention.

Remember, when putting out a campfire to first drown it with water. Next, mix the coals, ashes, and embers with soil. Feel the coals, embers, and any partially burned wood with a hand If it is too hot to touch, it is too hot to leave. Continue to add more water and mix until everything (including the rock fire ring) is cool to the touch.

All Forest offices and visitor centers are open and for hours of operation, visit bit.ly/HTNFForestOffices. Masks will not be required for short visits in the office or visitor centers unless the county is at HIGH level of spread of COVID. The following list of online and non-contact services are available at bit.ly/HTNFOnline_NonContact_Services.

All Forest offices and visitor centers are open and for hours of operation, visit bit.ly/HTNFForestOffices. Masks will not be required for short visits in the office or visitor centers unless the county is at HIGH level of spread for COVID. The following list of online and non-contact services are available at bit.ly/HTNFOnline_NonContact_Services.

The Bridgeport Ranger District’s Hoover Wilderness Quota Permits are available as follows: Advanced Reservation Wilderness Permits can be purchased at recreation.gov/permits/445856 and available to print within seven days of the entry date.

Late Reservation Wilderness Permits (formerly known as Walk-In Permits) can be purchased at Recreation.gov within three days of the entry date and are immediately available to print. If you need additional assistance for Late Reservation Wilderness Permits, call the Bridgeport Ranger District at (760) 932-7070, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. PST, or call the Recreation.gov Call Center at (877) 444-6777, 10 a.m. to midnight EST, seven days a week.

Non-Quota Trailhead Wilderness Permits are available at the wilderness kiosk in front of the District office.

Trip leaders are responsible for printing the permit before 11 a.m. on their day of entry and maintaining a signed hard copy in their possession for the duration of the trip.  For more information about Hoover Wilderness permits, visit bit.ly/HTNFHooverWildernessPermits.

Also, remember to recreate responsibly on the Forest by following the tips below:

Dispersed Camping – When camping outside of developed campgrounds, remember that creating new campsites kills vegetation and leads to soil erosion. If possible, use an existing site, or pick a site where vegetation is absent.

Pack It In, Pack It Out – Inspect the campsite, picnic area, or rest site for trash or spilled foods. Pack out all trash, leftover food, and litter, leaving the place cleaner than you found it.

Answering Nature’s Call – Find a spot at least 200 feet from any water source. Dig a hole 6-8 inches deep and bury human waste. Pack out used toilet paper and feminine products to prevent animals from digging them up.

Pets in the Forest – Pets should be leashed in developed recreation sites, including campgrounds, picnic areas, and trailheads. Along the trail, there may be additional signs instructing pet owners to keep pets on-leash. Remember to pick up and pack out pet waste.

Ride Ethically – Always stay on designated Forest roads and trails as they are designed using industry best practices to be environmentally sustainable. Go over, not around, obstacles to avoid widening trails. Remember it is illegal to ride cross-country on NFS lands, and motorized vehicles and bicycles are not allowed in wilderness areas. Forest’s Motor Vehicle Use Maps can be found at bit.ly/HTNFMVUM.

For additional information on the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, visit fs.usda.gov/htnf or participate in the conversation at twitter.com/HumboldtToiyabe and facebook.com/HumboldtToiyabeNF/.