More Cibola National Forest fire restrictions in place Monday

Posted at: 05/12/2013 9:54 PM
Updated at: 05/12/2013 10:23 PM
By: Maria Guerrero, KOB Eyewitness News 4

New Mexico’s drought hasn’t let up and that means neither has the fire danger.

Starting Monday morning, those who enjoy the Cibola National Forest will have to deal with even more fire restrictions.

It was a perfect day for Maria Freeman to enjoy the great outdoors with her in-laws visiting from France.

"One of the best gifts I got from my son for Mother's Day is ‘I'm going to take you hiking.’ I was like: yes, I'm ready," said an excited Freeman.

Starting 8 a.m. Monday morning those who want to take in the breathtaking sights the Sandia Ranger District of the Cibola National Forest and Grasslands have to offer will have to abide by even more fire restrictions.

Most restrictions have exceptions.

First off, campfires are not allowed, except in recreation sites.

Petroleum fueled stoves are allowed if it has a turn off valve.

"We like very much to have a campfire and stuff like that but in a situation like we have here in Albuquerque you just can’t take the chance," said Claude Freeman, who’s visiting from France.

Always a big fire concern, smoking isn't allowed.

But smoking will still be allowed in vehicles, recreation and areas three feet in diameter clear of any flammable materials.

“We went up to the top of the ridge along the Piedra Lisa Trail. Yeah, it's really dry. [It would] be scary if people were smoking out there," said Steven Allen of Albuquerque.

Fireworks of any kind are also banned.

Driving off National Forest Service roads will now be off limits.

"We've had a drought for three years so we're going to have fire restrictions. There's no way around it," said Allen.

Some other restrictions include firing a gun, operating a chainsaw and using a torch.