Hunters urged to be extremely cautious with campfires


By Colorado Parks and Wildlife
Special to The SUN
Because of extremely dry conditions throughout the state, Colorado Parks and Wildlife is urging hunters to be extra careful with their camp fires.
Hunters are heading to the high country for the combined deer and elk season that starts Saturday and continues through Oct. 27. Colorado has received little rain since late summer and several fires are now burning throughout the state. Fire can spread quickly through grasses and other dry vegetation.
Hunters, and anyone else camping, are urged to follow these precautions:
• Keep fires small and always keep them attended.
• When heading to bed, make sure the fire is out completely by soaking it thoroughly with water and checking for hot embers.
• If you start a fire in the morning, make sure it is completely out before heading into the field for the day.
• Any time you leave camp, make sure the fire is out.
• In windy conditions, it is recommended not to start a campfire.
• If you are using a wall tent with a wood stove, make sure there is a screen to block sparks on top of the external stovepipe. Check outside the tent occasionally for embers that might be smoldering.
• Don’t drive or park your vehicle over dry grass. Hot exhaust pipes can ignite vegetation. This applies to trucks, cars and off-highway vehicles.
• Don’t allow vehicle chains to drag on the ground or pavement because they can cause sparks.
• Dispose of cigarette butts safely; don’t toss them on the ground.