The BLM initiates seasonal fire and target shooting restrictions in the California Desert District


Bureau of Land Management

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California Desert District Office

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Fire Engine in the Desert

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. – The Bureau of Land Management has elevated its seasonal fire restrictions effective May 2 for BLM California Desert District-managed public lands within Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino, Riverside, Imperial, southern Inyo, eastern Mono, San Diego, and eastern Kern counties. These restrictions address the use of campfires, controlled flame devices and smoking on public lands, and will remain in effect until Oct. 28, unless terminated sooner if conditions warrant.

“With warmer temperatures, dead and dying grass, and an increase in fire activity, additional restrictions are necessary, and we ask for your cooperation to help minimize fire potential,” said California Desert District Acting Manager Greg Miller. “These proactive measures are put in place to protect public land visitors, communities, adjacent private lands, and natural resources from the risk of wildfire.”

The seasonal California Desert District Fire Prevention Order places in effect stage I and II fire restrictions for the California Desert District, as shown on the online map. The order explains which areas have restrictions on campfires, smoking, and the requirements for controlled flame devices such as portable stoves and lanterns. The order also prohibits recreational target shooting on BLM-managed public lands within San Diego, eastern Kern, western Riverside, western San Bernardino and eastern Los Angeles counties. The recreational shooting restrictions do not impact hunting.

The actions prohibited by this seasonal Fire Prevention Order are in addition to acts already outlined in the statewide Fire Prevention Order and the California Desert District Year-Round Fire Prevention Order, which provides requirements for campfire permits, instructions on maintaining a five-foot diameter clearance around campfires, guidance for extinguishing campfires on BLM-managed public lands in California, prohibits the possession and use of steel jacketed or steel core ammunition for recreational target shooting, and outlines applicable changes during any Red Flag Warning or Fire Weather Watch.

“On average, human-caused wildfires make up 95 percent of all wildfire occurrences annually here in California,” said BLM California Desert District Fire Management Officer Paul Gibbs. “Many of these wildfires occur close to roadways, communities and recreational areas, posing considerable threat to public safety.”  Stage I and II and recreational shooting restrictions, based on weather and vegetation conditions, are designed to help minimize the risk of human-caused wildfires in the California Desert District.

All BLM California Fire Restrictions can be found on our Fire Restriction website.

As stewards, the BLM manages public lands for the benefit of current and future generations, supporting conservation in pursuit of its multiple-use mission. The BLM encourages the public to recreate responsibly on public lands, to Know Before You Go, and follow these fire safety precautions:

  • Always have a five-foot circle cleared around your campfire (unless prohibited by current fire restrictions).
  • Always have a shovel and plenty of water on hand and put your campfire DEAD OUT, before leaving.
  • Never use steel targets, steel jacketed or steel core ammunition for recreational shooting as they are more likely to cause a fire.
  • Always park vehicles away from areas where exhaust could cause grass or other combustibles to ignite.


Violation of this order is punishable by a fine up to $100,000 or imprisonment of up to 12 months, or both.

The public can find additional information about wildfire on CAL FIRE’s website at

For more BLM information about fire restrictions, please contact the nearest BLM field office Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

  • California Desert District Office - 951-697-5200
  • Barstow Field Office - 760-252-6000
  • El Centro Field Office - 760-337-4400
  • Needles Field Office - 760-326-7000
  • Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office - 760-833-7100
  • Ridgecrest Field Office - 760-384-5400




The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.