CAÑON CITY, Colo. – Fire crews from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Royal Gorge Field Office and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) San Isabel National Forest - San Carlos Ranger District join forces to carry out their prescribed burning program this fall in southern Colorado.
Planned ignitions will begin when weather and fuel conditions become optimal for achieving management objectives with minimal smoke impacts to surrounding communities. Weather and fuel conditions will be closely monitored and the prescribed burning program will continue through the fall season as long as conditions allow.
Prescribed fire combined with mechanical and/or hand thinning treatments are effective land management tools used to reduce the accumulation of hazardous fuels and old and dense vegetation. Minimizing hazardous fuels reduces fire intensity and the risk of catastrophic wildland fires, which in turn minimizes the risk to firefighter and public safety. It also improves wildlife habitat and promotes and maintains healthier ecosystems.
Each prescribed burn has a detailed prescribed fire plan developed in advance, along with appropriate smoke permits obtained from state agencies.
USFS Prescribed Burning
Black Mountain (1200 acres – USFS): Fuels are primarily ponderosa pine,
pinyon and juniper, and grasses. The project area is located six miles north of Gardner in Huerfano County.
USFS Pile Burning
• Black Mountain Piles: Burn piles containing debris from thinning operations to reduce hazardous fuels. The burn piles are located seven miles north of Gardner in Huerfano County.
• Alvarado: Burn piles containing slash material from thinning. The burn piles are located eight miles southwest of Westcliffe in Custer County.
BLM Prescribed Burns
• Lakemoor West (132 acres – BLM): Fuels include ponderosa pine, grasses and debris (slash) from hand thinning treatments. The project area is located 40 miles northeast of Cañon City and 17 miles south of Florissant in Teller County.
• Rice Gulch (120 acres – BLM): Fuels include ponderosa pine, oak brush, and grasses. The project area is located approximately 20 miles northwest of Cañon City in Fremont County.
• Booger Red (350 acres – BLM): Fuels include ponderosa pine, oak brush, grasses and slash from mechanical treatments. The project area is located approximately 21 miles north of Cañon City in Teller and Fremont counties.
• Sand Gulch (175 acres – BLM): Fuels include ponderosa pine, grasses, mountain shrubs, and slash from mechanical treatments. The project area is located five miles northeast of Howard in Fremont County.
For more information on these projects, contact Tyler Webb, BLM Fire Management Specialist, 719-269-8560 or Dennis Page, USFS Fire Management Specialist, 719-269-8584.
To learn more about the Service First interagency partnership in Colorado go to: www.blm.gov/co/st/en/BLM_Information/service_first.html.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. In Fiscal Year (FY) 2011, recreational and other activities on BLM-managed land contributed more than $130 billion to the U.S. economy and supported more than 600,000 American jobs. The Bureau is also one of a handful of agencies that collects more revenue than it spends. In FY 2012, nearly $5.7 billion will be generated on lands managed by the BLM, which operates on a $1.1 billion budget. The BLM's multiple-use mission is to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. The Bureau accomplishes this by managing such activities as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production, and by conserving natural, historical, cultural, and other resources on public lands.