CANBERRA’S conservator of flora and fauna, Ian Walker, has decided to keep most parks and conversation-managed areas closed but a few will reopen.
“For safety reasons I have made the decision to maintain the closure of our managed estate west of the Murrumbidgee River,” Mr Walker says.
“This change allows for some of our recreation sites to be reopened, like Kowen Forest and the Mulligans Flat Sanctuary, while managing the public’s safety in our more remote areas.”
Nature reserves that remain closed include Namadgi National Park (including the visitor centre), Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve (including the visitor centre), Bullen Range Nature Reserve (west of the river only), Stony Creek Nature Reserve (west of the river only), Gigerline Nature Reserve, Lower Cotter Catchment, Rob Roy Nature Reserve, Blue Range Forest, Pierces Creek Forest, Hyles and Sherwood Forest, Ingledene Forest, Uriarra Forest (not including picnic areas at Uriarra Crossing), Googong Foreshores and the Bimberi wilderness area.
Five campgrounds, Woods Campground, Honeysuckle Campground, Orroral Campground, Mt Clear Campground and Blue Range Campground, will remain closed for the entire fire season, with one, The Cotter Campground, closed until further notice.
Four roads in northern Namadgi National Park, Old Mill Road, Warks Road, Blundells Creek Road and Mile High Road, will also remain closed for the entire fire season.
But, Mr Walker says swimming areas at the Cotter and along the Murrumbidgee River such as Kambah Pool, Pine Island, Point Hut and Uriarra Crossing will be open.
The Canberra Nature Park and pine forest areas east of the Murrumbidgee River will remain open to the public, too.
Electric barbecues provided at Casuarina Sands, Pine Island and in Canberra’s urban parks will be available, however, all gas barbecues will be turned off.
Mr Walker says there is a ban of naked flames across all of ACT parks and conservation areas until the end of March.