What it’s essential to know for tenting this 4th of July weekend in New Mexico

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NEW MEXICO (KRQE) — Now that state forests and open spaces are reopening, many people are ready to head into the July 4th long weekend.

“We’re so excited that the forest has reopened because we always love to go camping all summer and losing time until July has been tough,” said Dave Roberts, a camper at Jemez.

Bureau of Land Management lifts fire restrictions in 12 New Mexico counties

New Mexico’s forests and state parks expect bigger than usual crowds over the holiday weekend.

“The risk of fire in the forest is actually low thanks to this really enormous amount of moisture that we’ve been getting in the past few weeks. And more is forecast for the coming weekend, so if people go camping, they need to be prepared for showers and thunderstorms,” ​​said Julie Anne Overton, public affairs officer for the Santa Fe National Forest.

But even if it rains, officials want to remind campers to exercise caution, especially around campfires, and never camp near streams. While the national forests and open spaces have reopened to the public, many campgrounds near wildlife areas like Pecos and Jemez are still closed.

“Reserving those group spots, they’re generally in high demand, so you have to reserve them pretty well in advance. We reserved this set of seats in February or March,” said Zach George, a Jemez camper.

Visitors to New Mexico National Park brought in more than $195 million in 2021

Before heading out to enjoy the great outdoors, be sure to check the websites of the national forest or state park you plan to visit. The Forest Service will deploy recreational and fire patrols to ensure people are safe. Law enforcement agencies will also be on the road and can issue fines for any violators.