BLM reduces fire and shooting restrictions in the California Desert District

Fire fighters spray desert bush with a fire hose. Photo by Steve Razo/BLM.

MORENO VALLEY, Calif. – Effective Jan. 1, the Bureau of Land Management is reducing fire and shooting restrictions to Stage I throughout public lands in Southern California managed by the California Desert District. 

“Even though fire and shooting restrictions have been reduced, the threat of wildland fire on public lands remains an ongoing concern,” said BLM California Desert District Manager Andrew Archuleta. “The BLM is committed to keeping public lands open for public use whenever possible. We ask that the public remain mindful when using fire or participating in recreational shooting on public lands. After the last fire season, we are all too aware how quickly wildfires can start, spread and become dangerous under the right conditions.”

Areas in the BLM’s California Desert District previously designated with Stage II and Stage III fire and shooting restrictions have been redesignated to Stage I. These areas include public lands managed by the BLM California Desert District in Imperial, southern Inyo, Kern, Los Angeles, eastern Mono, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and San Diego counties. Under Stage I fire and shooting restrictions: 

  • Campfires, barbecues and gas stoves are allowed with a valid California campfire permit.
  • Smoking is allowed.
  • Recreational target shooting is allowed unless there is a Red Flag Warning or Fire Weather Watch for the area. The use of steel jacketed or steel core ammunition remains prohibited for recreational target shooting.

During Red Flag Warnings and Fire Weather Watches, as determined by the National Weather Service, all recreational shooting and use of campfires, regardless of stage restrictions, are suspended to reduce the potential of unintended wildland fire ignitions. 

The BLM greatly appreciates the public’s cooperation in helping to minimize the number of human-caused wildfires. The public is reminded to exercise extreme caution when using fire and to follow these precautions:

1)  Make sure to have a five-foot circle cleared around a campfire.

2)  Have a shovel and plenty of water on hand and put the fire DEAD OUT before leaving. 

3)  Carry a fire extinguisher if you are recreationally target shooting. 

4)  Park motor vehicles away from locations where exhaust could cause grass or other combustibles to ignite.

An interactive map and listing of fire restrictions for BLM-managed lands throughout California are available on the BLM website. To obtain a valid free California Campfire Permit, visit For alternative recreational target shooting locations visit To learn how to prevent wildfires, visit

The BLM encourages the public to recreate responsibly on public lands and to take precautions to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19. Stay local, plan ahead, practice safe social distancing and wear a mask when social distancing is not possible. Find additional tips for recreating responsibly on public lands.

For more information about wildfire prevention from the BLM, please contact the BLM California Desert District or a field office located near you.

Anyone found guilty of violating a fire prevention order may be fined up to $100,000 and/or imprisoned for up to 12 months. Restitution for total fire suppression and damage costs incurred may be borne by the trespasser.

This year, we invite everyone to reimagine your public lands as we celebrate 75 years of the BLM’s stewardship and service to the American people. The BLM manages approximately 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The agency’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. 

Release Date


Bureau of Land Management


California Desert District Office


Michelle Van Der Linden