Parched Dinosaur National Monument imposes new fire restrictions

No campfires, no smoking and no fireworks allowed.

The Green River sits below the Ruple Point Trail at Dinosaur National Monument on Sept. 9, 2017. Photo by Nate Carlisle/The Salt Lake Tribune

Dinosaur National Monument will implement stage 2 fire restrictions at 12:01 a.m. on Friday and they will remain in effect until further notice because of the heat wave and lack of rain.

The restrictions prohibit:

• Building, maintaining, attending or using a campfire, or charcoal, coal, or wood stove fire, even in a developed recreation site or an improved site. (Petroleum-fueled stoves and lanterns will still be allowed.)

• Smoking, except in an enclosed vehicle.

• Any use of fireworks, which are never allowed in Dinosaur National Monument.

Any violation is punishable by a fine of up to $5,000, or a jail term of up to six months, or both.

According to the National Park Service, the intent of the stage 2 restrictions is to reduce the number of human-caused fires at a time when northeastern Utah and northwestern Colorado are experiencing “critical fire conditions,” with above-normal temperatures, low humidity and extremely dry fuels.

The 210,000-acre monument extends from Utah into Colorado. On the Utah side, it’s in Uintah County west of Vernal; on the Colorado side, it’s in Moffat County north of Dinosaur.