Law enforcement officials say they are happy to have the assistance of outdoor enthusiasts in spotting illicit marijuana fields, but they warn tipsters to steer clear of such areas because they could be booby-trapped.
"Anyone who spots marijuana growing should leave it alone, and as soon as possible notify the Forest Service or proper law enforcement agency," state narcotics agent Jay Averett said.Speaking during a recent recreational planning meeting of federal, state and county representatives, Averett said Utah has been lucky the past couple of years because its drought weather has not been good for growing marijuana, which needs lots of water as well as sunshine.
"But because of northern Utah's increased rainfall this past year, it looks like it's going to be a good place to grow marijuana," he said.
Kim Christensen, Forest Service law enforcement agent, said any signs of farming activities - such as hoses, hoes or fertilizer in the forests - are likely signs of marijuana crop activity.
"But if you spot something suspicious, back off. The site could be booby-trapped," he warned.
Averett said July and August are prime marijuana harvest times in Utah.