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Sat, July 04

Bill Williams Mountain closed to reduce fire risk

Bill Williams Mountain Watershed area is closed to the public June 13-Sept. 1 or until rescinded. (Photo/Kaibab National Forest)

Bill Williams Mountain Watershed area is closed to the public June 13-Sept. 1 or until rescinded. (Photo/Kaibab National Forest)

WILLIAMS, Ariz. — Kaibab National Forest has temporarily closed the Bill Williams Mountain watershed, this includes all hiking trails on the mountain along with popular forest roads around the mountain and Bill Williams Mountain Road.

The mountain was closed in order to reduce the risk of human-caused wildfires and resulting post-wildfire flooding.

“All of the Bill Williams Mountain trails are closed,” said Jackie Banks, public affairs officer for Kaibab National Forest. “The entire area is closed to all entry, including foot traffic.”

Buckskinner Park is under the jurisdiction of the city of Williams. Effective June 13, the city followed forest official’s lead closing Buckskinner Park and the forest service road behind Santa Fe Dam.

The closure is in effect June 13-Sept. 1, or until rescinded.

Bill Williams Mountain closure boundaries

The restricted area consists of all National Forest System lands, roads, and trails within the boundary beginning at the junction of Interstate 40 and Forest Road (FR) 108, commonly known as the Devil Dog exit, and travels south and east along FR 108 to the junction of FR 108 and County Road (CR) 73. The boundary then extends north along CR 73 to the junction of Old Route 66 in the city of Williams. From this junction, the boundary travel west to the junction of Old Route 66 and Interstate 40 at the Country Club exit. The boundary then travels west along Interstate 40 to the junction of FR 108 at the Devil Dog exit.

More information about the Bill Williams Mountain watershed closure on Kaibab National Forest and a detailed map of the closure area is available at https://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/kaibab/alerts-notices/?aid=59384

Forests enter Stage 2 fire restrictions

Additionally, effective June 3, Coconino and Kaibab national forests have implemented Stage 2 fire restrictions across both forests.

The forest are implementing Stage 2 restrictions because of increasing fire danger and the need to prevent human-caused wildfires during potentially dangerous fire conditions.

Under Stage 2 restrictions, the following is prohibited:

Fires, campfires, charcoal, coal and wood stoves.

Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least 3 feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of any flammable material.

Welding or operating an acetylene or other torch with open flame.

Operating a chainsaw or other equipment powered by an internal combustion engine between the hours of 9 a.m. and 8 p.m.

Visitors may use devices that are solely fueled by liquid petroleum or LPG fuels that can be turned immediately on and off with no remaining burning material. Fireworks and explosives, including exploding targets, are never allowed on national forests.

The Red Rock Ranger District of the Coconino National Forest previously implemented Stage 2 fire restrictions June 3. Prescott National Forest entered Stage 2 restrictions June 3.

Grand Canyon National Park is also under Stage 2 restrictions.

The public should be aware that fire restrictions often exist on non-federal land, such as city, county and state.

Stage 2 fire restrictions will remain in effect until significant precipitation reduces fire danger levels. Violation of the restrictions on national forests is punishable by a fine of up to $5,000, imprisonment up to six months, or both.

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