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Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
California Campfire Permit 2012 on 04/01/2012 08:45:05 MDT Print View

The on-line 2012 California Campfire Permit is up:

http://www.fs.fed.us/r5/sequoia/passespermits/campfire_permit/calcampfirepermit2012.pdf

CA hikers are required to have a signed copy of this when we use a stove or build a fire in CA national forests, etc.

Kronos Master of Fate
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: California Campfire Permit 2012 on 04/01/2012 10:30:23 MDT Print View

What I find stupid about this whole fire permit thing is. They will give one to anyone. Heck I've filled them out for myself. They give no education prior to handing one out. SO what is the point? They count usage from hiking permits and parking lot estimates.

Anyway I always get my new one the first day of the year that the office is open in January.

Bill Law
(williamlaw) - M

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: California Campfire Permit 2012 on 04/01/2012 11:13:56 MDT Print View

I think it must be a CA legislative April fools joke that nobody caught on to. I discussed this with friends on an outing last year and we could come up with no reason for it save giving rangers a reason for writing a ticket for not having one.

They should charge $.05 for one so it would at least bring in some revenue.

Mike Oxford
(moxford) - MLife

Locale: Silicon Valley, CA
permit on 04/01/2012 12:43:24 MDT Print View

1) They're easy to get, free and takes about 10 minutes, tops.
2) They can use statistics to determine if people are interested/using these
3) It's a barrier-to-entry to keep the casual (and usually more careless) users from using potentially destructive gear. If you're responsible and get the once-per-year permit then they're okay. If you're not, you get a ticket.

I think of it as "less party people out there" because they're not interested in doing the Right Thing; they just want to go out and tear it up. A ticket or two and they'll stop coming out (because they're not serious enough to make the micro-effort to get a free permit.)

=)

-mox

USA Duane Hall
(hikerduane) - F

Locale: Extreme northern Sierra Nevada
Get it early on 04/01/2012 12:52:07 MDT Print View

I get mine in early January too, before I have a chance to forget it. Never been checked for one, once in awhile for a wilderness permit. Kind of a joke, I wish they would give more info on what not to burn in a fire and how to put it out when done. Pack it in, pack it out.
Duane

Kronos Master of Fate
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: permit on 04/01/2012 12:59:59 MDT Print View

I have also never been asked to produce one in the backcountry, ever.

I don't buy #2 as up here you fill out your backcountry permit and grab a prefilled fire permit from the pad, all signed. I don't think they really count those. Not a good way anyway as you could get a new one everytime you go out. Did you go out for one night or three hundred? They can't tell from your fire permit.

As for #3 They go out anyway as they don't even think about permits in the first place. You know, the "It's public land, I pay my taxes" crowd.

I also have never heard of anyone ever getting ticketed for not having one. Since they keep a copy of the one you get. Is there a database? Not. Since the permits are free and serve no real purpose in actuality why not just have the ranger give you one with the speech?

Stupid waste of money and resources. The backcountry permit that you fill out for the King Range also is your fire permit. Why not just do it that way?

Then there are all those places that require no permits for access to use. Maybe it is a bigger problem in the east.

Edited by kthompson on 04/01/2012 13:01:18 MDT.

Daniel Cox
(COHiker) - F

Locale: San Isabel NF
Gotta be a Joke on 04/01/2012 13:51:26 MDT Print View

The only way a fire permit could possibly get any more funny and asinine is if there was a warning across the bottom that says:

WARNING: [Fire] contains chemicals known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm.

Seriously? A permit to use a canister stove? LoL. So awesome.

Jace Mullen
(climberslacker) - F

Locale: Your guess is as good as mine.
California Campfire Permit 2012 on 04/01/2012 15:32:19 MDT Print View

My guess, considering that every time I fill out a permit for the San Bernadino Nat. Forest is that they hope people read what is actually on the permit. It serves as a handy "rulebook" that people feel more or less obliged to take with them.

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Checked on 04/01/2012 15:50:21 MDT Print View

The only time I've been checked was when getting a Wilderness Permit at a ranger station. I had to go out to my truck and dig down in my pack for it. I've never been checked on the trail.

Chris C
(cvcass) - MLife

Locale: State of Jefferson
permits on 04/01/2012 16:21:16 MDT Print View

I always get mine from the self serve kiosk outside my local ranger station, it's a really ridiculous system.

No one has ever checked my permit, it is good all year in any national forest in the state of California. I do it because it's required, but have never understand why.

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Terms of permit? on 04/01/2012 19:22:31 MDT Print View

The first two terms or requirements of the permit are"

"1. Clear all flammable material away from the fire [this includes gas stoves!] for a minimum of five feet in all directions to prevent the escape of the fire."

Not exactly LNT, eh?

"2. Have a shovel available at the campfire site for preparing and extinguishing campfires."

I'm sure they aren't thinking that my shovel is a QiWiz Big Dig! Has anyone ever seen a backpacker (any kind, not just UL) carrying a full sized shovel down the trail???

Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
CA Campfire Permit on 04/02/2012 10:52:41 MDT Print View

For the last few years I've always printed the campfire permit off the Sequoia National Forest's website. It at least makes you take (and pass) a 3 or 4 question quiz about safe campfire practices before you can print out your pre-signed permit. For me it's much more convenient since I can't ever seem to get to a FS Ranger station when it's actually open. I presumed you had to "pass" some similar quiz if you picked up your permit in person.

As far as checking for campfire permits, I've had rangers ask to make sure we have one, typically when we're at the ranger station picking up our backcountry permits. In my local National Forest, there are no permits required to enter/hike the backcountry or wilderness areas but I have heard of some of the local Volunteer Wilderness Rangers (VWRs) doing campfire permit checks in the backcountry instead. For those found without, they get issued one on the spot, so there's still no repurcussions for not having one.

I don't know too many people who carry around shovels in their packs, but some National Forest Districts (like the Santa Barbara district of Los Padres NF, for example) make an effort to outfit each official backcountry campsite with a shovel or two for hikers to use for campfire duties. The FS supplies the shovels, the VWRs pack them in and leave them at the campsites. They usually last a few years before some knucklehead inevitably burns up the shovel's handle in... you guessed it! The campfire.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: CA Campfire Permit on 04/02/2012 11:08:55 MDT Print View

It used to be that you could get your annual campfire permit by showing up at a national forest ranger station and showing them that you had two important items. One was something to carry water in. It could be a collapsible bucket, cook pot, etc. The other was something to dig or scrape earth with, and that could be a shovel, cathole trowel, etc.

--B.G.--

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: CA Campfire Permit on 04/02/2012 11:22:21 MDT Print View

"It used to be that you could get your annual campfire permit by showing up at a national forest ranger station and showing them that you had two important items. One was something to carry water in. It could be a collapsible bucket, cook pot, etc. The other was something to dig or scrape earth with, and that could be a shovel, cathole trowel, etc"

Yep. Part of the current process is that hopefully most people will read it and retain it. A separate campfire permit does communicate the importance of fire safety and the the other part is, "that is how we have always done it."

Obtaining a fire permit every year does not bother me at all. I have more important things in life to worry and fret about.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: CA Campfire Permit on 04/02/2012 11:25:52 MDT Print View

"Part of the current process is that hopefully most people will read it and retain it."

Nick, you are making some big assumptions about the effectiveness of the California public school system on reading.

--B.G.--

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: CA Campfire Permit on 04/02/2012 11:34:49 MDT Print View

I know Bob. That is why "hopefully" was included in the sentence. :)

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: CA Campfire Permit on 04/02/2012 11:46:28 MDT Print View

I was issued a permit this weekend by a Volunteer Wilderness Ranger. Of course, he just happened to be joining me on my own personal trip. I let him issue me the permit so that the trip counted as official business and maybe he could write this off on his taxes. He said he hasn't figured out how to write his volunteer stuff off on his taxes yet.

Kevin Lutz
(mtntrailrunner) - F
Re: California Campfire Permit 2012 on 04/02/2012 20:48:46 MDT Print View

Thanks for the link Stephen. I have been looking for a 2012 permit. Last time I checked the other online permits were outdated.

Hikin' Jim
(hikin_jim) - MLife

Locale: Los Angeles, CA, USA
Re: California Campfire Permit 2012 on 04/03/2012 09:23:40 MDT Print View

Stephen: Thanks for posting that link. I just got a certain very nice stove in the mail that I'll need that permit in conjunction with. :)

General comment: I think it varies by forest and station what the issuance procedure is. At the HQ station in the Angeles National Forest they had me read something and gave me a talk about how rocks will explode if I use them to make a fire circle.

I never ever been "carded" for my fire permit. I have been checked for a wilderness permit innumerable times.

HJ
Adventures In Stoving

USA Duane Hall
(hikerduane) - F

Locale: Extreme northern Sierra Nevada
Used to carry a regulation shovel on 04/03/2012 11:11:50 MDT Print View

I have one of those heavy, short camping shovels that made it legal to have a fire. I have not used it for years, never saw anyone else carry one, nor the Rangers ask. Just like some do with a toothbrush, I cut the handle to minimum size and length, mostly so it would fit my old Camptrails pack.
Duane