HUNTSVILLE, Utah — The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources is closing part of Ogden Valley's Middle Fork Wildlife Management Area to overnight camping, citing several problems that have occurred there.
"Trash, vandalism, drug use, domestic violence and habitat degradation: These are among the reasons the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources has decided to close overnight camping on part of the Middle Fork Wildlife Management Area, effective immediately," a posting on the DWR's website says.
Camping will still be allowed in parts of the Middle Fork WMA from the second Saturday in April through September 9, but overnight camping is prohibited in the parking area and within a third of a mile of the parking area.
The Utah DWR began to establish Wildlife Management Areas in 1940 to protect the habitats of deer and other wildlife. According to DWR, the sites are open to hunters and anglers who help pay for the sites' upkeep by purchasing licenses.
"The areas were not purchased to give people a place to camp, but we've still allowed camping on many of them through the years," said Scott Walker, regional habitat manager for the DWR, in the online posting. "However, overnight camping issues in the parking area at the Middle Fork WMA have gotten so bad that overnight camping is no longer allowed in that area from the second Saturday in April through Sept. 9."
According to DWR, the Weber County Sheriff's Office deputies and DWR conservation officers were called to the Middle Fork WMA parking area 75 times in 2020 alone.
Other places to camp around the Ogden Valley include the campsites at Pineview Reservoir, the North Fork Campground outside Liberty, and the U.S. Forest Service campgrounds off SR-39.