The Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest will implement Stage 2 fire restrictions across the forest starting at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, July 31.

“With firefighting resources stretched thin, and significant fire conditions, we are looking for available opportunities to prevent more wildfires this summer,” said Acting Forest Supervisor Sara Mayben. “We urge folks to look for alternative ways to enjoy the forest that help us achieve our goal of preventing uncontrolled human starts.”

Under Stage 2 fire restrictions, the following activities are prohibited:

•Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire, campfire or stove fire.

•Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a designated area, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.

•Operating or using any internal combustion engine (e.g. chainsaw, generator, ATV) without a spark arresting device properly installed, maintained and in effective working order.

•Operating a chainsaw without an approved spark arresting device as described in Prohibition #3, and a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher and a round point shovel.

•Operating a motor vehicle any distance off designated roads and trails (parking is permitted in areas immediately adjacent to designated roadways completely barren of any flammable materials).

•Welding, grinding, or operating an acetylene or other torch with open flame.

•Between 1 p.m. and 1 a.m., operating a chainsaw or other portable equipment powered by an internal combustion engine for felling, bucking, skidding, processing, road building and woodcutting during industrial operations or firewood gathering capable of igniting a fire. Outside these hours, a one-hour foot patrol in the work area is required following cessation of these activities.

•Target shooting unless hunting in the lawful pursuit of game.

Visitors may use devices that are fueled solely by liquid petroleum or LPG fuels that can be turned on and off, but only within an area that is barren or cleared of flammable materials within three feet of the device. Fireworks, explosives and exploding targets are never allowed on federal lands in Montana.

Visit: to learn more about fire restrictions. Follow up on Facebook @HLCNF or our Twitter @LewisandClarkNF for the latest.