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Miles City Field Office
Release Date: 04/05/13
Contacts: Mark Jacobsen, (406) 233-2831,    
News Release No. 130405A

BLM encourages responsible springtime recreation

MILES CITY, Mont. --- The BLM would like to remind everyone to be mindful of current fire conditions and to respect wildlife, private landowners and other recreationists while enjoying public lands.

April looks to be a great opportunity to find a cure for cabin fever and eastern Montana will soon be the destination for resident and non-resident alike with the advent of turkey season and warm weather camping opportunities.

Current fuel and fire conditions on the landscape are similar to the conditions seen last September and dry, standing grasses and other fuels are flammable regardless of recent precipitation.  Spring green-up is still a few weeks out.

“Even though local BLM-administered lands are not currently under fire restrictions, we’d like recreationists to be careful out there,” said BLM Fire Management Officer Eric Lepisto.  “Any ignition source can potentially start a wildfire, even in April.”

Camping is welcome on BLM-administered lands and presents an excellent opportunity for the public to get outside and renew their outdoor connections with friends and family. Observing “Tread Lightly” principles, leaving a location better than how it was found, will go a long way in allowing others a similar positive outdoor experience.

“Cleaning up trash on public lands costs taxpayers money,” said BLM Outdoor Recreation Planner Dena Lang. “It can also be considered hazardous waste, which costs even more to clean up. Please don’t create this hazard on your public lands.”

Recreational shooters are reminded to pick up their spent casings and targets and to shoot responsibly. Exploding targets, tracers, incendiary ammunition and fireworks are prohibited on public lands. Last year, exploding targets were responsible for several uncontrolled fires on BLM lands in Idaho and Utah.

Motorists are encouraged to avoid parking a hot exhaust system over tall vegetation. As always, cross-country vehicle travel on public land is prohibited in order to protect natural resources and reduce impacts.  Motorized travel is allowed on established roads and trails only.

• Stay on existing roads and trails. Keep your vehicle undercarriage clear of debris; don’t park over tall, dry vegetation.
• Pack it in, Pack it out - All trash and targets must be removed. For quick clean-up of shell casings try shooting over a tarp.
• Never leave a campfire unattended. Keep water and a shovel handy. Crush cigarettes and matches “dead-out” and pack out with garbage.
• Make it hard for noxious weeds to hitchhike; wash vehicles before and after.
• State regulations apply on Federal lands.
• Commercial, competitive or organized group activities require a BLM permit. Check with the Miles City Field Office for details.

Incidents can be reported by calling the BLM Miles City Field Office at: (406) 233-2800.  Violations may also be reported by calling 1-800-826-3023 or 1-800-TIP-MONT.  Local fire information is available local county offices or by calling the Miles City Interagency Dispatch Center at (406)233-2900.

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The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

Miles City Field Office   111 Garryowen Road, Miles City, MT 59301  

Last updated: 04-11-2013