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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Kamiak Butte camping closed

By Josh Babcock Moscow-Pullman Daily News

One of Whitman County’s most popular campgrounds – Kamiak Butte – has been closed due to fire danger.

The county park’s five miles of forested hiking trails are open for day use, but as of Friday the park’s campground has been closed until further notice.

Parks staff said the campground would likely open once the Palouse sees enough rainfall to reduce the chance of wildfires.

The closure by the Whitman County Parks Department comes partly in response to a 10-acre blaze at the top of the butte last weekend. The investigation into the cause of that fire is ongoing, but Palouse Fire Chief Mike Bagott told the Daily News on Monday the fire could have been caused by an illegal campfire on the south side of the butte late Saturday night.

While the county park is open during the day, there are some fire restrictions for those hiking the butte, and in all county parks: no open fires and no smoking on trails.

Fireworks are not allowed in Kamiak Butte, Klemgard and Wawawai parks, in the Elberton ghost town or on the Colfax and Bill Chipman Palouse trails.

Only gas stoves and briquettes can be used for cooking at the parks.

Trail delays

Beginning Tuesday and continuing through the week, sections of the Bill Chipman Palouse Trail will experience delays and closures while county crews clean the asphalt and fill in cracks. Trail users can expect delays July 5, but the rest of the week portions of the trail will be closed as the cracks are filled and allowed to dry. For specific closure information, contact the Whitman County Parks Department or visit their Facebook page.

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