Protecting People, Homes & Natural Resources | SW Montana
STAGE II Restrictions FAQs
1. If I conduct an activity that is restricted, can I be fined? Yes. The amounts may differ
depending on the agency with authority in that area, but Montana State Law allows for a fine of up to six months in jail and $500.00.
2. Can I be held liable if I start a fire? Yes. You could be responsible for paying some or even all of the costs that it took to
put the fire out. Check with the according agency on specific regulations.
3. How do I find out if my land is classified as forested? Montana
Law defines forestland as land that has enough timber, standing or down, slash, or brush to constitute in the judgment of the department
a fire menace to life or property. Grassland and agricultural areas are included when those areas are intermingled with or contiguous
to and no further than one-half mile from areas of forestland. Your tax statement has this information about your land. If you cannot
access your statement, check with your local unit office.
4. How do I know what a designated road or trail is? Call the local land
management agency where you would like to go. If the land is classified as forested (see above), contact the Department of Natural
Resources and Conservation. If they are not, contact your local agency. They should be able to advise you and furnish maps of trails
that are safe and open for use.
5. Do these restrictions apply to towns and/or private property? Many cities and towns in Montana
also adopt the restrictions, and would therefore cover those areas inside their jurisdiction. County and city government may also
impose further restrictions on private, city, or county-owned lands. These can be even more prohibitive than what is issued by the
6. Do these restrictions apply to valley bottom areas? Restrictions written by the Montana DNRC only apply to all state land
and all state and private forested land. Restrictions written by county and other agencies generally apply to valley bottom area that
is outside of the classified forestland. Violations/Penalties
Missoula County Fire
Wildfire can happen in the blink of an eye and if you're on a grassy, sun-drenched slope when a fire starts, you (or your home) can be in extreme danger.
When our vegetation (from grass to trees) becomes drought-stressed and tinder dry, MCFPA member partners will impose fire-use restrictions. On occasion, AS NEEDED, officials may also close temporarily some popular Open Space sites -- as a public safety precaution. When this happens, we'll post all pertinent information here.
Missoula County officials want all citizens to recreate safely during WILDLAND FIRE season. Remember: One little spark can equal a big fire. So, please, be careful out there as you explore the Big Sky State.
STAGE I Restrictions - WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?
1. NO Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire or campfire unless noted
in the exemptions. Click here for Exemptions
2. NO Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation
site or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
FIRE USE RESTRICTIONS
GENERAL OUTDOOR BURNING SEASON IS CLOSED
March 1 - August 31
PRESCRIBED WILDLAND BURNING SEASON IS CLOSED
March 1 - November 30
ESSENTIAl AGRICULTURAL BURNING IS CLOSED
March 1 - October 31
is in Stage 1 Fire-Use RESTRICTIONS as of 7/3!
Stage 1 Restrictions affect campfires and smoking
outside of vehicles or buildings.
No Fireworks or Outdoor Burning !
Restricted Fire-Use Area (Stage 1) Maps
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