Williams, AZ (July 10, 2007) - In order to prevent human-caused fires, the Kaibab National Forest will close to public access at 8 a.m. Friday (July 13, 2007) unless significant, widespread precipitation is received across the forest. Four developed campgrounds - Kaibab Lake, Cataract Lake, Ten-X and DeMotte - will remain open with fire restrictions in effect.
"While many other forests received rain last week, the vast majority of our forest did not," said Mike Williams, forest supervisor of the Kaibab National Forest. "We already have a large lightning-caused fire on our North Kaibab Ranger District that we are working to suppress. We want to do whatever we can to prevent human-caused fires."
Once the closure is in effect, all activities will be prohibited on the Kaibab National Forest, including camping, hiking, biking and motorized vehicle use. While Kaibab Lake, Cataract Lake, Ten-X and DeMotte campgrounds will remain open, fire restrictions will be in effect. No fires, campfires, stove fires or charcoal grills will be allowed in the campgrounds. Pressurized liquid or gas stoves, lanterns and heaters meeting safety specifications will be allowed. Generators will continue to be allowed in the campgrounds, but stand-alone generators will be required to be placed on bare ground or hardened surfaces.
The following permitted businesses located on the National Forest will remain open: Jacob Lake Inn, Kaibab Lodge and the North Rim Country Store, which are all on the North Kaibab Ranger District. Also, Kaibab Camper Village, which is on private property surrounded by the North Kaibab Ranger District, and Forest Road 461 to Camper Village will remain open. On the Williams Ranger District, Spring Valley Cabin will remain open for visitors with reservations, as will the road accessing it - Forest Road 76.
Grand Canyon National Park and the main routes accessing it remain open.
People exempt from the closure include any federal, state or local officer or member of an organized firefighting force in the performance of an official duty; livestock permittees; and owners of residences within the closure area.
"Our overarching goal is public safety," Williams said. "While we hope this closure won't last long, it will all depend on when and how much rain we receive."
For more information, call (928) 635-8314 or visit www.fs.fed.us/r3/kai. The latest fire restriction and closure information for public lands across Arizona can be found at http://gacc.nifc.gov/swcc/ or by calling toll-free 1-877-864-6985.