Patrols on the Santa Fe National Forest (SFNF) over the long Fourth of July weekend reported only five abandoned campfires – a huge improvement over recent weekend tallies of 45 abandoned campfires the weekend of June 22-23 and another 11 for June 29-30.
“Good snowpack and a wet spring may have delayed the onset of fire season in Northern New Mexico, but we are definitely there now,” Fire Staff Officer Lance Elmore said. “And with the monsoon season, we are going to see more lightning-caused fires. So we really appreciate the effort folks made over the Fourth of July to put their campfires completely out before they packed up and headed for home.”
Abandoned and unattended campfires are the leading human cause of wildfire. The SFNF will continue its public awareness campaign both online and in person, handing out brochures and posting flyers at campsites, to help educate people on the proper way to start and – more importantly – put out a campfire.
There are no fire restrictions currently in place on the SFNF. “We want visitors to enjoy every aspect of the Santa Fe National Forest,” Forest Supervisor James Melonas said. “And part of that is having the option of gathering around a campfire with family and friends. Thank you to all of our weekend visitors for being good stewards of the forest.”