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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Sports >  Outdoors

Dishman Hills, Mica Peak remain open despite DNR land closures

Big Rock as seen on Monday June 17, 2019. In December, the Dishman Hills Conservancy purchased 120-acres just south of Big Rock. The parcel was privately owned and could have been developed, drastically changing the ecology and mood of the Big Rock area. ELI FRANCOVICH/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW.  (Eli Francovich)
Big Rock as seen on Monday June 17, 2019. In December, the Dishman Hills Conservancy purchased 120-acres just south of Big Rock. The parcel was privately owned and could have been developed, drastically changing the ecology and mood of the Big Rock area. ELI FRANCOVICH/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW. (Eli Francovich)

The Dishman Hills Conservancy and Mica Peak, two popular recreation areas near Spokane, remain open despite restrictions on some public lands.

On Tuesday, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife closed its lands to night use and the state Department of Natural Resources closed its Eastern Washington lands to all use in response to high wildfire danger.

Those closures have prompted confusion about what is, or isn’t open in the Spokane area, said Spokane County parks planner Paul Knowles.

Some of the confusion stems from conflicting media reports. Some of it comes from the fact DNR owns land at both areas.

The Dishman Hills Natural Resources Conservation Area is jointly managed by DNR, Spokane County Parks and Dishman Hills Conservancy, according to a news release from the Conservancy.

Still, trails within Dishman Hills Natural Area will remain open, including Camp Caro and all trailheads serving the natural area.

“The trail systems remain accessible,” Knowles said.

The closure order does not affect other Dishman Hills trailheads, including: Glenrose Trailhead, Phillips Creek Trailhead, Iller Creek Trailhead, Stevens Creek Trailhead and the trail systems they serve. Likewise, Dishman Hills Conservancy property within Dishman Hills remains open.

“We’re monitoring the situation like everyone else,” Knowles said. “State parks hasn’t closed their parks. We’re just going to see how this fire season plays out.”

Washington State Park land remains open although during a news conference Wednesday, Gov. Jay Inslee said, “We have to be prepared, if this thing gets worse, to make tough decisions.”

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