KALISPELL, MT., June 28, 2016 Area residents will be celebrating July 4th in the great outdoors, with many enjoying activities on public lands.  With warmer, dryer weather predicted; federal, state and county officials urge people to use caution when recreating or working outdoors with any combustible material.  Leave fireworks at home and observe fire safety measures.  A wet spring kept the fire season at bay, but has produced an abundance of grasses.  This means plenty of fine fuels are available to burn as they cure and dry out.

Please take additional precautions to prevent wildfires, such as clearing the brush around campfire rings, making sure campfires are "dead out" before leaving them, smoking only in cleared areas, and avoid parking in tall, dry grass.  Always carry a shovel and water with you to extinguish fires.  Remember that possessing or using fireworks on all National Forest System Lands, or any national park or state land is prohibited.   Anyone found responsible for starting a wildland fire may be held liable for the cost of putting it out and/or damages caused by the fire.

Campgrounds across the Flathead National Forest are available and open.  There are several concession-operated campgrounds in which reservations are required for some sites, and other sites are first-come first-serve.  Campers are reminded that at a fee campsite the site must be occupied on a daily basis. Saving campsites is not permitted at a fee campground.  Campground information, including a list of developed campgrounds on the Flathead National Forest, is available at:  http://www.fs.usda.gov/activity/flathead/recreation/camping-cabins
River enthusiasts are reminded to be prepared, wear required life jackets, know your abilities, have the proper safety gear on board and know how to use the gear, and treat the river with respect.  For more information please visit:  http://www.fs.usda.gov/activity/flathead/recreation/wateractivities
The Forest has 2,249 miles of trails that access mountain lakes, peaks, valleys, and wind along river bottoms.   The variety of users that enjoy the Flathead Forest trails include hikers, bikers, horse riders, ATV and OHV riders, snowmobilers, and motorcycle riders.  Many of the trails provide for multiple use with hikers, riders, and bikers using the same trail.  On these trails, please be respectful of all users and share the trail.  For more information please visit:  http://www.fs.usda.gov/activity/flathead/recreation/hiking
Please visit www.fs.fed.us/r1/flathead or contact a local Flathead National Forest Office for additional and updated information.   Phone numbers for each ranger district are:
Hungry Horse Ranger District                   406-387-3800
Swan Lake Ranger District                         406-837-7500
Tally Lake Ranger District                          406-758-5204
Spotted Bear Ranger District                     406-758-5376
Enjoy recreating on the Flathead National Forest and have a safe and happy 4th of July!