The lake level has been dropping dramatically since June 1, when the reservoir water began to be drained off for irrigation in the McKinnon, Wyoming area. Because this past winter was so dry, the water has been needed much earlier than in past years. Many of our campers have commented on how much lower the lake is than at this time last summer. The dry winter and, so far, very dry summer has also contributed to a significant number of wildfires throughout the west. This past week we’ve seen (and sometimes breathed) the smoke from some of the wildfires in Utah. This has provided us some pretty spectacular sunsets, but I’d rather have ordinary sunsets and no wildfires. MSNBC reported this being the worst wildfire season in recent history.
Effective June 14, the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest, where we currently make our home, was put on Stage 1 fire restrictions, which means no campfires except in campground fire pits. Since this restriction was put into effect, the “unofficial” campsites just outside the campground have remained vacant, where they had been full only the week prior. These unofficial sites had been quite popular – offering lots of space and no fees. What’s not to like? No campfires. Somehow it’s just not camping if you can’t build a fire.
The Forest Service has put us on alert that the fire situation will be re-evaluated shortly after the 4th of July. If they move to Stage 2, no fires will be allowed – not even in the campground fire pits. This could be bad for business, but a wildfire would be far worse.
Today it is raining in the valley. I hope that the national forest is also receiving this much-needed precipitation.