More than 60 days without much if any rain across the state has left the land parched and tinder dry.
With available firefighting crews already committed to containing or mopping up a number of blazes, prevention becomes the watchword.
The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife has issued temporary restrictions for campfires and other open flame sources that apply to all its managed lands (owned or leased) around the state.
This emergency order dovetails with restrictions in effect on lands in other jurisdictions.
CLAMMER FOR RAZORS
With the promise of good digs this fall, state shellfish managers are seeking recommendations on how the coming Pacific Coast beach personal use razor clam opportunities should be structured (dig days, daily limits and other rule elements).
The agency's ideas are now available online and with no preseason meetings scheduled, suggestions can be submitted via email or postal service until Tuesday, Oct. 9.
The first round of digs will likely take place in mid-October.
For more details about this fall's razor clam seasons, September fire restrictions plus more fishing and hunting news, read the Outdoors Column in the Sunday Herald.
Doug Huddle, the Bellingham Herald's outdoors correspondent, since 1983 has written a weekly fishing and hunting column that now appears Sundays. Read his blog and contact him at http://pblogs.bellinghamherald.com/outdoors.