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Release Date: 04/03/12
Contacts: Michael Blakeman, (719) 852-6212    

Fire Danger Depends On Location in the SLV (03-29-12)

MONTE VISTA – The San Luis Valley Public Lands Center (SLVPLC) wants SLV residents to know that although the valley’s fire danger isn’t nearly as severe as the conditions found along the Front Range, things are changing fast.

“The early snowmelt and warm temperatures have created conditions where a fire could spread quickly on a windy day,” said Rio Grande National Forest’s Fire Management Officer Jim Jaminet. “The areas with the highest fire danger are the valley floor and south and west facing slopes in the foothills.”
Most of the north facing slopes in the foothills still have patches of snow and wet soils creating moderate fire danger conditions.   Under dry, windy conditions, a fire could still burn through last year’s brown grass and dry shrubs, such as rabbitbrush.  

Residents are advised to be extra careful with fire during the spring windy season. People planning to burn ditches or piles should inform their county sheriff’s department or local fire department and check the weather to ensure high winds are not predicted.  

“The spring season, before green-up, is always a dangerous time of year for fast moving, wind-driven fires,” said Jaminet. “Hopefully we will get moisture soon and have a rapid green-up that will help reduce the early season fire danger in the low elevations this year.”

For more information concerning the current fire danger, contact your local fire department or the SLVPLC at 852-5941.

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. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

  1803 West Hwy 160      Monte Vista, CO 81144  

Last updated: 04-03-2012