Originally Published: July 12, 2007 9:53 p.m.
Kaibab National Forest officials have decided to keep most of the forest open because of rain on the forest in recent days.
Forest officials announced Monday that they would close most of the forest unless it received "significant, widespread" rain.
On Wednesday, they announced that the Williams and Tusayan ranger districts covering 1,422 square miles south of the Grand Canyon received enough rain at the onset of the monsoon to stay open. The region recorded one-tenth to one-half of an inch, officials said.
However, today they still will close nearly all of the North Kaibab district, which covers 1,010 square miles north of the Grand Canyon.
The Kaibab is the only national forest in Arizona to announce a large-scale closure. However, all five forests have varying levels of fire-use restrictions.
The only exceptions to the North Kaibab closure are the DeMotte and Jacob Lake campgrounds and three businesses: Jacob Lake Inn, Kaibab Lodge and North Rim Country Store. Kaibab Camper Village, which is on private property surrounded by the national forest, also will remain open, along with Forest Road 461 that accesses it.
On the Kaibab south of the Grand Canyon, the Bill Williams watershed has been closed since mid-June to protect the City of Williams' water supply.
Fire use currently is illegal on all state and federal lands in Yavapai County. All motor vehicles must stay on roads and cannot use trails. Smoking is legal only inside vehicles and buildings. Chainsaws and other uses are illegal until the region receives enough monsoon rainfall to reduce the restrictions. Fireworks always are illegal everywhere in Arizona without special permits.
Local municipalities and fire districts also have implemented fire restrictions on private lands in the Prescott region.
For details about fire-use restrictions on private lands in the Prescott region, visit www.regionalinfo-alert.org.
For more details about fire restrictions on public lands throughout Arizona, call 1-877-864-6985 or visit the Internet at www.azfireinfo.com.