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Partial Closure of Carson National Forest - National Park Service

Posted Jun 25, 2018

With last winter's low snowfall and spring's light rains, plus recent high temperatures and occasional windy conditions, The National Park Service today has initiated an immediate closure of the Camino Real District of the Carson National Forest in the Penasco area. Effective Wednesday, June 27th at 6:00am, the Questa, Tres Piedras, El Rito and Canjilon District closures go into effect. Combined, these district's comprise most of the national forest land in Taos County. This partial closure will remain in effect until the forest receives significant moisture and conditions have improved.

The Jicarilla Ranger District will remain in Stage 2 Fire Restrictions and is exempt from the forest closure.

The closure order prohibits all recreational activities in these districts of the Carson National Forest. Campgrounds, trails and trailheads, and National Forest System roads will be closed to the general public. County and state roads that cross Forest Service lands are not under the Forest Service’s jurisdiction and will remain open to vehicular traffic.

"Some of the finest mountain scenery in the Southwest is found in the 1.5 million acres covered by the Carson National Forest. Elevations rise from 6,000 feet to 13,161 feet at Wheeler Peak, the highest in New Mexico," says The National Park Service. "Our objective is to maintain that natural beauty."

Violations of the closure order carry a mandatory appearance in federal court and are punishable as a Class B misdemeanor by a fine of not more than $5,000 for individuals.

Know before you go: the order imposing fire restrictions this Wednesday will be posted under Alerts and Notices on the Carson National Forest website; fire restrictions in New Mexico can be found at ;  and fire updates are posted on the New Mexico Fire Information website at

For more information, call the Carson National Forest, Jim Gumm: 575-491-6748.

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