Wildlife officials seeing increase in illegal camping and target shooting in parts of Millville-Providence canyons – Cache Valley Daily


Mouth of Providence Canyon.

No shooting sign in Providence Canyon that has been shot at multiple times.

LOGAN — Officials with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources are seeing a recent increase in illegal camping and target shooting in the Millville-Providence Wildlife Management Area. The area was closed to overnight camping and target shooting last year after years of ongoing issues, including public safety concerns.

According to a press release from the DWR, people have decided to use the “No Shooting” signs for target practice and have knowingly walked past “No Camping” signs to set up illegal campsites. After the recent uptick in violations, conservation officers are reminding the public of the rules, and that citations will be issued for violations.

The restricted area includes the first mile of Providence Canyon and half-mile of Millville Canyon. Beyond the wildlife management area, people enter US Forest Service Land that currently doesn’t have similar restrictions.

As with all wildlife management areas in Utah, the property was not acquired as a place for the public to camp or target shoot. However, the DWR had allowed those activities through the years, as long as overnight campers treated the land with respect and the target shooting was done safely and responsibly.

DWR Regional Habitat Manager Daniel Olson said, “The hot weather, dry conditions and ongoing drought are drying out the vegetation in the area. The risk of a wildfire in the area is growing every day, so we need people to comply with the necessary restrictions that are in place. Wildfires in the area could be detrimental for wildlife that depend on the WMA for feed and shelter during winter months. The target shooting has also become a public safety concern due to the proximity to trails in the area, which is why that restriction was implemented.”

DWR habitat managers have reported in recent weeks that overnight campers are damaging wildlife habitat and leaving a lot of trash behind. Some of the garbage has even floated down a creek near Millville Canyon, causing problems for agriculture users who irrigate fields farther downstream.

They also said unattended campfires have been left behind by campers and others who visit the WMA at night.

Much of the target shooting on the WMA occurs in Providence Canyon. In the canyon, bullets occasionally fly in the direction of a popular trail used by those who visit the WMA during the day, causing public safety concerns.

DWR conservation officers are now issuing citations to those who don’t comply with the rules that are in effect on the WMA. Those who violate the no camping rule or the no shooting rule will face a $210 fine for each violation. Those who litter and leave trash on the WMA will face a $350 fine. Those who vandalize or steal signs will face a fine of $490, plus additional liability for the amount of damage caused.



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