I hope the only person’s BWCA campfire plans I screwed up this weekend were my own. We had hoped to get through 2013 without any fire restrictions for the canoe camping season. Technically I’m not sure if we did.
We were told by the USFS there was going to be a partial fire ban implemented on Friday, August 30th at 12:01 am. Then an email was sent out by the District Ranger to USFS worker bees at 8:13 am on Friday, August 30th stating the restrictions that were going to go into effect at 12:01am weren’t going to go into effect. The worker bees emailed us at 8:21 am but we don’t always have time to check our email right away in the morning and some of our groups leave before then as well. I don’t know when the Big BWCA Honcho sent out an email to the District Rangers about the Fire Restrictions but word didn’t trickle down to me before I had left for the BWCA.
Lucky for my group of enthusiastic pre-teens I don’t wear a watch when I’m camping in the Boundary Waters. When they asked if it was “OK” to start the campfire for dinner on Friday night I looked at the sun, saw it was sinking, looked at the lake, saw there were no waves and said, “Sure, it’s got to be close to 7pm.”
So, were there Fire Restrictions in the BWCA in 2013? I’m guessing the Big BWCA Honcho made the decision not to have one prior to 12:01am and we just didn’t get the word it had been called off for 8 plus hours
In a world of instant communication it seems amazing we all couldn’t have been informed at the same time but I guess that’s how bureaucracy works, or doesn’t work in the case of the BWCA Fire Ban.