The Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Department will initiate its annual fire ban on Tuesday, May 1. “We typically try to wait until after Memorial Day weekend to implement our fire ban so park visitors can enjoy spending time around the campfire with their families during their visit. However, this year the valley hasn’t received a significant amount of rain, which has left conditions ideal for wildfire ignition. As a land manager, we believe the decision to implement sooner rather than later is the responsible thing to do to ensure park visitor and park resource safety,” said R.J. Cardin, Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Director.
A fire ban is initiated to limit the possibility of starting a brush fire, which could cause serious damage to the parks. The fire ban includes the use of campfires, fire pits and charcoal grills; however, it is still acceptable to use gas/propane grills in designated areas such as the ramada areas, semi-developed and developed camping sites, and along the shoreline at Lake Pleasant Regional Park. Violation of this park rule, Rule 113, may result in a citation.
It is also important to note that during this time of year, the National Weather Service often issues red flag warnings across central Arizona to alert land management agencies that conditions are ideal for wildfire ignition. Should this occur before the fire ban goes into effect, park supervisors have been authorized to issue temporary fire bans to ensure public safety and protect the parks resources. When temporary fire bans are issued, information will be posted on the website, and park visitors will be notified as they enter the park. The parks will also stop selling firewood during this time.
While smoking in the parks is still permissible, it is discouraged due to the extremely dry conditions. If you must smoke, please be responsible and ensure that all cigarettes are properly extinguished and placed in trash receptacles. A date to lift the fire ban has not been identified and will be determined by the amount of rain Maricopa County receives during the monsoon season.
The following Maricopa County parks are affected by the fire ban:
- Adobe Dam Regional Park,
- Buckeye Hills Regional Park,
- Cave Creek Regional Park,
- Estrella Mountain Regional Park,
- Hasssayampa River Preserve,
- Lake Pleasant Regional Park,
- McDowell Mountain Regional Park,
- San Tan Mountain Regional Park,
- Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area,
- Usery Mountain Regional Park, and
- White Tank Mountain Regional Park
Helpful Fire Restriction and Property Management Information:
When will the fire ban be lifted?
A date has not yet been identified. One of the primary factors used when deciding to lift the fire ban is to review the amount of rain received during the monsoon season. Rain gauge information can be found at:
Is there one website I can visit to locate fire ban information for all agencies?
Is there a website I can visit to learn about current wildfires in the state?
- Yes, below are several resources for you to choose from:
In addition to fire ban information, we are often asked who owns the property that surrounds our parks. How do I find this information?
- Here are a couple of good resources to assist you with determining if the land is managed by a public or private agency: