Updated as of Wednesday, Aug. 23
Fire restrictions and closures
Starting July 7, restrictions prohibit visitors to eastern Washington WDFW-managed lands from:
- Making fires or campfires, including those in fire rings. Personal camp stoves and lanterns fueled by propane, liquid petroleum, or liquid petroleum gas are allowed.
- Discharging firearms for target shooting or other recreational purposes, aside from lawful hunting, unless otherwise posted, with the following exception: Target shooting is permitted from sunrise to 10 a.m. through Aug. 15, only at two Department shooting ranges:
- Methow Shooting Range, Methow Wildlife Area Unit
- Asotin Creek Shooting Range, Asotin Creek Wildlife Area Unit
- Note: Starting Aug. 16 through Sept. 15, restrictions prohibit discharging firearms for target shooting anywhere on WDFW-managed lands (including the previously mentioned target shooting ranges) in eastern Washington, unless otherwise posted.
- Smoking, except in an enclosed vehicle. Do not throw lit cigarettes out your window.
- Welding and operating chainsaws, including the use of an acetylene torch or other open flame.
- Operating a motor vehicle away from developed roads. Parking is permitted within designated parking areas, including developed campgrounds and trailheads; and in areas without vegetation that are within 10 feet of roadways. Reference our news release for more information.
- As of May 15, a seasonal burn ban went into effect on the Klickitat and Columbia Basin wildlife areas. Campgrounds at Leidl Park, Stinson Flat, Mineral Springs, and Turkey Hole water access sites along the Klickitat River observe the Klickitat Count Zone 2 burn ban dates.
- Box Springs Road: As of Monday, July 24, Box Springs Road, which provides access to the WDFW-managed Simcoe Unit, is closed and being evacuated to support public safety response to the Newell Road Fire. Visitors to the Simcoe Unit should opt for other locations. Reference Klickitat County's website for more information.
The Crater Creek Fire burning in the northeast corner of the Pasayten Wilderness in north central Washington has closed the Horseshoe Basin area that is very popular with hunters doing the annual high buck hunt. The only public access to the Wilderness is currently from the Okanogan-Wenatchee side. Forest Service administrators are reevaluating closures daily but expect that the area will remain closed by the time the hunt begins on Sept. 15. If you had planned to hunt that area, you are highly encouraged to find an alternate location.
For help finding other hunting location opportunities or permits, go to https://www.eregulations.com/washington/hunting/deer-general-seasons. For information on current closures, go to the forest websites, Okanogan-Wenatchee and Colville National Forests. Stay up to date on the Crater Creek Fire and closure information on https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident-information/wanes-crater-creek-fire.
Private timberlands closures due to fire risk
With hot weather and dry conditions, several private timberland owners in Washington are limiting public access due to high fire danger, including private forests typically open to hunters. Properties in Stevens, Yakima, Skamania, and Klickitat counties are impacted, some of which have WDFW Private Lands Hunting Agreements or are generally open to public use.
Lands owned or managed by the following entities are impacted: American Forest Management, Broughton Lumber Company, Columbia Land Trust, DGS Timber, Green Diamond, Kreps Ranch, Kreps Family LLC, Lupine Forest Manulife Forest Management, Twin Creeks Timber, and Western Pacific Timber, LLC. Please respect these closures and use extreme caution to prevent fires on any lands you use at this time.
Before heading out to hunt, scout, or take advantage of other recreation opportunities on private lands, check with landowners to confirm current access policies, including restrictions on vehicle access or permit requirements.
Proceed with caution in fire mop-up areas
Please be mindful of firefighters working in the following recently reopened area on remaining mop up. Avoid burned areas for safety. Visit the Recreate Responsibly website for more information about getting outdoors during wildfire season.
Plan your outdoor adventure
Get ready for your outdoor adventure! Plan your trip to a WDFW wildlife area or water access area. WDFW actively manages more than 1 million acres of public land and 500+ water access areas throughout the state.
Target shooting on WDFW-managed lands
WDFW strives to provide a positive recreational experience for all outdoor enthusiasts at our wildlife areas across the state. As the number of people recreating on public lands increases each year, it is important for all visitors to have an extra level of awareness.
Know before you shoot! WDFW’s target shooting regulation changed in 2021 to increase public safety, prevent wildfires, and protect habitat. Review the rule and frequently asked questions.
For more information, review the Target Shooting in Washington Brochure.
- Burns bans in Washington, organized by county and other jurisdictions
- Emergency fire closures for National Forests in Pacific Northwest Region
- Conditions for Methow Valley Recreation
- DNR Fire Restrictions Restrictions that apply to DNR-protect forestlands throughout Washington
- DNR Fire Dashboard Situation snapshot of fires in Washington and preparedness levels
- InciWeb Up-to-date information on wildfires in U.S.
- Okanogan County Emergency Management
- Washington State Park closures
How to help wildlife impacted by wildfires
Check out our blog, Four ways to help wildlife after wildfires.