Hunting in Burned Areas
People intending to hike into, or near, the fire area should remain alert and aware of their surroundings at all times. Know the forecasted weather before entering the area, assess the weather conditions while in the area, and stay clear of burned trees. Don’t camp or hang out in the wildfire area. And, as always, let someone know your planned route, destination and expected return time.
Hazard trees or snags tend to pose the most imminent threat. Dead or dying trees that remain standing after a wildfire are unstable, especially in high winds.
People are more likely to be aware of obstacles on the ground but don’t often look up to assess danger.
Forest visitors can expect to encounter firefighter traffic, dusty roads, areas of smoke.
Other hazards to be aware of include:
Burned-out stump holes can make the ground weak and subject to failure.
Loose rocks and logs are unpredictable and present the hazard of rolling debris.
Ash and fallen needles are slippery and can make for treacherous footing on trails.
Flash floods and mud flows may occur, especially in areas without vegetation.
Hunters may be traveling in areas with high fire dangers or fire closures from recent or ongoing wildfires. Hunters are asked to use extreme caution and follow all fire restrictions while in the field. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you are planning to hunt on public lands:
Know before you go if there fire restrictions in effect.
Consider campfire alternatives such as propane stoves.
If campfires are allowed, make sure your fire is dead out before leaving. Drown, stir, and drown again. If it’s too hot to touch, it’s too hot to leave.
Do not idle, drive or park on dry grass as vehicle exhaust and undercarriage could potentially ignite the grass or brush.
Do not flick a cigarette out a vehicle window because it can start a wildfire. Extinguish smoking materials in the vehicle ashtray.
Check any chain you may be using on a trailer. Dragging metal on the roadbed can start a shower of sparks into dry vegetation causing a wildfire.
Report wildfires by calling 911.
As always, let someone know your planned route, destination and expected return time.