Parks, recreation sites urge campers not to leave trash, harsh chemicals behind

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Officials say ammonia and bleach had been poured around a tent to keep ants out. (Source: Grand Canyon National Park) Officials say ammonia and bleach had been poured around a tent to keep ants out. (Source: Grand Canyon National Park)
APACHE JUNCTION, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

This week, Grand Canyon officials posted on Facebook a photo of a camping site, in which ammonia and bleach had been poured around a tent to keep ants out. The Tonto National Forest also posted a photo on Facebook, showing garbage left near the East Verde River.

"Anytime you're camping, the No. 1 rule is, don't disturb the wildlife," said Glenn Schlottman with Arizona State Parks and Trails.

The Arizona Office of Tourism shows nearly 273,765 people visited state parks in May - an increase of 34,151 from May of 2016.

"No matter when you come to the state, there is some place in Arizona, there's a perfect season," Schlottman said. "Right now, getting up to the pines is great."

It's not just trash you need to mindful of. Want to light a fire? Schlottman said state parks, national parks, BLM land, etc. all have different rules.

"It still depends on what park you go to, because we still have dry areas of the state," Schlottman said. "Even as the monsoons roll in, the bans haven't been lifted across the whole state."

Wherever you go, there will be some constants - take your trash with you, and if you are allowed to have a campfire, don't leave your site until it's cool to the touch.

Schlottman said the state parks have a program where they teach novices to camp. Learn more here.

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