Camping in forest? Pack in some drinking water

Special to the Post Independent

If you plan on going to any of the designated campgrounds and day use areas on the White River National Forest, you are encouraged to bring your own drinking water, as numerous sites may not have potable water this summer.

Some of the drinking water unavailability is due to the drought and wells going dry. In other cases, tests indicate that water does not meet current state safe drinking water standards. Until upgrades and repairs to water systems can be made, the Forest Service cannot provide safe drinking water.

The Forest Service will provide water for restrooms and for extinguishing campfires. Signs will be posted advising visitors not to drink the water from spigots and hand pumps that do not meet safe drinking water standards.

The good news is, at this time, fires are allowed within designated fire rings on the White River National Forest.

“We want people to enjoy their public lands over Memorial Day weekend,” said deputy forest supervisor Steve Sherwood. “We regret we may not have drinking water at all our facilities, but we encourage you to enjoy the great outdoors.”

“With 85 campgrounds and day use areas on the forest, it’s difficult to list those that have drinking water,” Sherwood noted, “so, be sure to bring a couple gallons of drinking water with you just in case you need it.”

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