Winter is behind us, and Summer days lay ahead of us. Preparing for next winter is not as prevalent in our minds this time of year. But, for those who use wood fire heat in their homes, you may already be looking ahead at stocking your supply of firewood.

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Speaking of firewood, Summer evenings in Montana would not be the same without a warm campfire, which may require you to go and chop your fuel for the fire. Cutting firewood is perfectly legal on public lands in Montana. However, California has a new law that piles some hefty fines on top of your wood supply.

Have you ever heard of the "50 Mile Rule?" It is a law in California that could land you some serious fines if violated.

According to

California prohibits the entry of out-of-state firewood if it originated in an area infested with a harmful tree pest such as emerald ash borer, spotted lanternfly, Asian longhorned beetle, spongy moth, and others. Bringing firewood into California can introduce these and other invasive pests which cause immense damage to natural and agricultural resources. All firewood brought into the state is subject to inspection and will be confiscated if deemed a risk by authorities.

Beware of California's '50-Mile Rule' or Be Fined!

Some say it's safer to keep it to 10 miles!

Gallery Credit: Credit: Mateo, 103.5 KISS FM

Just take one look at some of the devastation caused by beetles in Montana. Across the state, millions of trees are dead due to an infestation of beetles. California hopes to isolate infestations of tree-killing critters. Asking people to simply "burn it where you buy it." If caught transporting firewood for a distance further than 50 miles, could land you a serious fine.

Could Montana implement a policy like the "50-Mile Rule" to fight the beetle infestations? Maybe, but that problem is bigger than campfires and heating homes.

Looking Back at One of Montana's Most Explosive Fires

The 2013 Lolo Creek Fire burned within 6 miles of Missoula

Gallery Credit: Dennis Bragg

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