Flagstaff Prescribed Burns

 

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Flagstaff prescribed burns are a familiar occurrence to those living in and around the Coconino National Forest.

Flagstaff prescribed burns are conducted each fall, winter, and early spring. These seasons provide conditions suitable for conducting small prescribed burns.

Wind, humidity and other factors must be within acceptable tolerances for the Forest Service to conduct a specific prescribed burn.

Each of the prescribed burns is planned and scheduled in advance... and a specific prescribed burn may be delayed because conditions change.

Crews conduct the burns with an emphasis on safety and control. Crews are on-scene before, during, and after each burn is conducted.

Reducing the fuel available to a wildfire and protecting our communities and forests are worth the occasional smoky (and sometimes stinky) conditions.

 

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Prescribed fire activity is dependent on personnel availability, weather – including winds and ventilation, and approval from the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (www.azdeq.gov).

Fire managers make every effort to minimize smoke impacts to the communities while continuing to address the critical need to reduce the risk of severe wildfires around those communities. Tactics to keep smoke impacts as minimal as possible include cancelling burns when conditions aren’t favorable, finding alternative uses for the debris in slash piles, timing ignitions to allow the majority of smoke time to disperse prior to settling overnight, and burning larger sections at a time when conditions are favorable to reduce the overall number of days smoke is in the area.

In addition, the Coconino National Forest coordinates prescribed fire plans with the partners of the Ponderosa Fire Advisory Council (which includes state and local fire departments), as well as neighboring forests, to reduce the impact of smoke on the communities.

The public can obtain additional prescribed fire information via the following:

  • Prescribed Fire Hotline: 928-226-4607
  • Coconino National Forest Website: www.fs.usda.gov/coconino
    • Click on “Prescribed Fire” on the right of the page
  • Follow us on Twitter: www.twitter.com/CoconinoNF
  • Local Ranger Stations: Flagstaff Ranger District, 928-526-0866; Red Rock Ranger District (Sedona) 928-203-2900; Mogollon Rim Ranger District (Blue Ridge) 928-477-2255

 

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As a reminder, when fire managers are deciding whether to suppress a wildland fire, manage it for resource benefits, or even to begin ignition on a prescribed fire project, they consider conditions such as location, weather, and potential size, behavior, and direction.  Conditions may warrant suppression strategies in some locations while conditions in other areas are suitable for prescribed fire ignition.

 

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Prescribed Burns News and Information

 

After 100 years of actively suppressing fire in our national forests, the clinical report is in. Our forests are unhealthy and the prescription for getting them back to a healthy state is -- fire.

When the land now contained within the boundaries of the National Forests were in a natural state, fires swept through in a two to six year cycle. These fires were low intensity and effectively controlled the understory of the forest, eliminating fuels on a regular basis.

The Forest Service is now endeavoring to replicate the natural process with prescribed burning and mechanical treatment. Burning will take place when various conditions such as humidity, wind direction, speed, and fuels moisture make it safe and effective to burn.

The public can register to receive regular email notifications of planned burns by choosing the “Southwestern Region” option at http://www.fs.fed.us/news/subscription.shtml. Information can also be obtained via the Prescribed Fire Hotline at 928-226-4607, our website, and Twitter at www.twitter.com/CoconinoNF.

 

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September 16, 2014

Kaibab National Forest

 

North Zone Fall Prescribed Fire Begins

 

FREDONIA, Ariz. – Pending favorable weather conditions, North Zone fire managers will implement a prescribed fire treatment in the Jacob Ryan South project area tomorrow at the Groupsite Unit, which is 471 acres in size.

The Groupsite Unit is located within the North Kaibab Ranger District (NKRD) and is bordered by Highway 89A on the north, Forest Service Road (FSR) 205 on the east, FSR 634 on the south and Highway AZ 67 on the west. The prescribed burn will be continuously monitored by Forest Service firefighters to control spread.

During the planning stages of any prescribed fire, fire managers carefully develop a prescribed fire burn plan and implement the prescribed fire treatment only when environmental conditions are ideal to assuring firefighter and visitor safety and only upon approval of the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality.

“These treatments are necessary to reduce hazardous fuels accumulation in the forest and protect the community from the threat of future large fires,” said North Zone Fuels Specialist Dave Robinson. “We understand that smoke created while we accomplish this may impact people in the Jacob Lake vicinity, and we do our best to keep the public informed of our plans and activities, particularly those who may have sensitivities to smoke.”

Objectives specific to this season’s prescribed treatments include improving the defensible space in the Wildland/Urban Interface within the NKRD developed areas, expediting the development of northern goshawk habitat, increasing landscape resilience to wildfire, insects and disease, returning fire to a fire-adapted ecosystem, improving forest health and sustainability and enhancing public safety.

Visitors are cautioned that they may see fire personnel and fire vehicles in the vicinity when any prescribed fire is being implemented, and are reminded to drive slowly, turn on headlights, and avoid stopping in areas where fire personnel are working.

For more information on smoke and air quality, please visit www.azdeq.gov or wildlandfire.az.gov/.

 

 

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September 12, 2014

Kaibab National Forest

 

North Zone Fire Managers Prepare for Rx Fires

 

FREDONIA, Ariz. – North Zone fire managers are preparing for the upcoming prescribed fire season on the North Kaibab Ranger District, and anticipate starting these prescribed fire treatments as soon as weather and fuel conditions are favorable to do so.

Fire managers carefully develop a prescribed fire burn plan and implement this plan only when environmental conditions are ideal to assuring firefighter and visitor safety and to achieving the desired objectives of reducing accumulations of hazard fuels, maintaining the natural role of fire in a fire-adapted ecosystem, protecting sensitive cultural and natural resources, and decreasing risks to life and property.

Plans for each prescribed treatment contain a set of parameters that define the desired weather and fuel conditions under which a prescribed fire may be initiated, and those conditions will continuously be monitored by North Zone personnel throughout the treatment process. The following prescribed treatments are scheduled and will only be implemented after fire managers have evaluated the current weather conditions and determined that conditions are favorable for that prescribed burn:

Oquer Prescribed Fire:The Oquer project is 3,541 acres in size and is located within the central portion of the district. The unit is bound by Forest Service Road (FSR) 761 on the north/northwest side, FSR 418F on the southwest side, FSR 418B on the south/southeast side and FSR 1025 to 1025B to 761Y on the northeast side. This burn unit is predominately comprised of ponderosa pine and mixed conifer with scattered clumps of aspen.

Jacob Ryan South Prescribed Fire:The Jacob Ryan South project is comprised of two units adjacent to the Jacob Lake developed area. The combined units are 1,546 acres in size and are bordered by Highway 89A on the north, FSR 225 on the east, FSR 258 and 634 on the south and Highway AZ 67 on the west. This burn unit is mainly comprised of ponderosa pine with scattered clumps of aspen.

Moquitch 2 Prescribed Fire:The Moquitch 2 project is approximately 5 miles west of AZ 67 and is 2,486 acres in size. The burn unit is geographically located east of FSR 282, north of FSR 212 and west of FSR 640. This burn unit is mainly comprised of ponderosa pine with scattered clumps of aspen.

Dry Park 422E Prescribed Fire:The Dry Park 422E project is approximately 1,225 acres in size. The unit is bound by FSR 422D and 422E on the north and east and FSR 422 on the west and south. This burn unit is predominantly composed of mixed conifer and aspen with areas of ponderosa pine.

Dry Park PU1 Prescribed Fire:The Dry Park PU1 project is approximately 854 acres in size. The unit is bound by FSR 422 on the north, FSR 226 on the east, FSR 6954 on the south, and FSR 206 on the west. The burn unit is predominantly composed of mixed conifer and aspen with areas of ponderosa pine.

Objectives specific to this season’s prescribed treatments include improving the defensible space in the Wildland/Urban Interface within the North Kaibab Ranger District developed areas, expediting the development of northern goshawk habitat, increasing landscape resilience to wildfire, insects and disease, returning fire to a fire-adapted ecosystem, improving forest health and sustainability and enhancing public safety.

During these prescribed treatments, visitors may see fire personnel and fire vehicles in the vicinity when any prescribed fire is being implemented. Visitors should drive slowly, turn on headlights, and avoid stopping in areas where fire personnel are working.

All prescribed burning on the Kaibab National Forest is subject to approval by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality and appropriate weather conditions. For additional information on the Smoke Management Division of the ADEQ and to view prescribed burns authorized for any given day, visit http://www.azdeq.gov/environ/air/smoke/index.html.

Before prescribed fire treatment is implemented, notification will be provided through multiple channels to include email news releases, Twitter and the forest website, and the status of any initiated prescribed fire can be tracked on InciWeb.

Get fire activity updates and maps 24 hours-a-day:

Fire Information Line at 928-635-8311

InciWeb at inciweb.nwcg.gov

To SMS text: ‘follow kaibabnf’ to 40404

 

 

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September 1, 2014

Prescott National Forest

 

Prescribed Burning Planned September 2-4 on the Verde Ranger District

 

Prescott, AZ –Fire managers on the Verde Ranger District are planning to start ignitions on the Tex Canyon Project beginning Tuesday, September 2 through Thursday, September 4, pending favorable weather conditions.

Specific days to burn will be determined by current and expected weather patterns allowing fire managers to make every effort to minimize smoke impacts to nearby communities.

Tactics to keep smoke impacts as minimal as possible include canceling approved burns when conditions aren’t favorable, timing daytime ignitions to allow the majority of smoke time to disperse prior to settling overnight, and burning larger sections at a time when conditions are favorable to reduce the overall number of days smoke is in the area.

Tex Canyon Project – Fire managers plan to treat approximately 300 of the 3500 acre Tex Canyon Project north and east of the Whitehorse Subdivision (T14N, R2E, Sec 22, 27). Plans are to conduct a limited prescribed burn to reduce fuels next to control lines for future treatment of the Tex Canyon Project. By burning the fuel close to the control lines, this widens the area devoid of fuels and enhances our control features. By burning now we can take advantage of wetter conditions and target the fuel on the ground close to the control line. The wetter conditions will not allow fire to get up into the brush canopy and run, which is something we will want to accomplish when we burn later this fall.

All prescribed fires activity is dependent on the availability of personnel and equipment, weather, fuels and conditions that minimize smoke impacts as best as possible and approval from the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (www.azdeq.gov).

The public can obtain additional prescribed fire information via the following:

Prescott NF Fire Information Hotline: (928) 777-5799

Prescott NF Forest Website: http://www.fs.usda.gov/prescott/

Local Ranger Stations: Bradshaw Ranger District, (928) 443-8000; Chino Valley Ranger District (928) 777-2200; Verde Ranger District (928) 567-4121

 

 

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August 30, 2014

Kaibab National Forest

 

North Zone Fire Managers Begin Planning for 2014 Pile Burn Season

 

FREDONIA, Ariz. –North Zone fire managers are making preparations to begin pile burning as early as tomorrow on the North Kaibab Ranger District, depending on weather and fuel moisture levels. The goal of the pile burning is to remove fuels within the forest in order to lessen the potential intensity of a wildfire.

Specifically, fire crews plan to burn 325 acres near the intersection of Forest Service Road (FSR) 271 and FSR 206B, which is located near Stina Point. Crews also plan to treat 98 acres near the intersection FSR 22 and FSR 422D, which is located in the general vicinity of the Dry Park Lookout Tower.

All prescribed burning on the Kaibab National Forest is subject to approval by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality and appropriate weather conditions. For additional information on the Smoke Management Division of the ADEQ and to view prescribed burns authorized for any given day, visit http://www.azdeq.gov/environ/air/smoke/index.html.

For additional information regarding the North Kaibab Ranger District pile burns, contact the North Zone Fuels Specialist, Dave Robinson, at (928) 643-8138.

 

 

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August 27, 2014

Kaibab National Forest

 

Williams and Tusayan Ranger District's 2014-2015 Prescribed Fire Plans

 

Starting this September, the Williams and Tusayan Ranger Districts have prescribed (Rx) fire plans for approximately 12,700 acres and 4,400 acres respectively. However, significantly fewer acres may be treated through fire if conditions are not favorable. Conditions include correct temperature, wind, fuel moisture, ventilation, and relative humidity. When these criteria are met, crews implement, monitor, and patrol each burn to ensure it meets the goals and objectives outlined by fire managers.

“We know that during implementation of prescribed fires, firefighter activity, helicopter noise, vehicle traffic, and smoke can all have an impact to forest users and our communities” said Forest Fire Staff Officer, Art Gonzales. “So we include these concerns into our decision process and work very closely with the National Weather Service and the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality to minimize these impacts as much as possible while still meeting our goals for forest health and public safety.”

Key goals for prescribed fire include continuing efforts to improve forest health, enhance public safety, and return fire to a fire-adapted ecosystem. Additionally, prescribed fire lowers the risk of severe wildfires on the forest during critical summer fire conditions by reducing litter, debris, and dense stands of trees. “We’ve made great strides in areas where private businesses and homes meet the forest, but there is still lots of work to be done in creating defensible spaces” Gonzales added.

Before a Rx fire, notification will be provided through multiple channels including; email news releases, Forest fire information line, Inciweb, Twitter, flyers, and the Forest website. Immediately following a Rx fire, browning of lower level pine needles may occur as the tree crown is raised. This is perfectly normal and healthy. Some areas are also part of long term project work where future timber marking paint, mechanical thinning equipment, and other impacts may occur.

Get fire activity updates and maps 24 hours-a-day:

Fire Information Line: 928-635-8311

Inciweb: inciweb.nwcg.gov

Text Message: text ‘follow kaibabnf’ to 40404

For more information on smoke and air quality please visit www.azdeq.gov or wildlandfire.az.gov.

 

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Prescribed Burns Information

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December 11, 2013

USFWS

 

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and The Nature Conservancy Establish New National Agreement for More Controlled Burning

 

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) and The Nature Conservancy (Conservancy) announce a new partnership that will for the first time increase and better coordinate controlled burn activities, also known as prescribed fire, on their respective lands to enhance wildlife values. The agreement will encourage more efficient use of personnel and equipment while treating lands that might otherwise not get the benefit of controlled burning.

“The wildlife habitats we manage need more prescribed fire to survive and thrive, and we can get more done on the ground by working together,” said Jim Kurth, Chief, National Wildlife Refuge System.

Today, controlled burns are used by land managers to safely mimic the natural fire cycle and maintain fire-resilient landscapes for the benefit of people, water, and wildlife. Planned, controlled burns are also a critical tool to help reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfires, often termed mega-fires, which have become more common in the past decade.

“The use of managed, controlled burns is essential to the health of our lands and waters, and the critical life-giving benefits they provide us,” said Blane Heumann, Director of Fire Management for the Conservancy. “We can also reduce the overgrowth of fuels that feeds the mega-fires of summer. We are very pleased and proud to be working more closely with the Service through this agreement.”

Collectively, the two entities manage more than 78 million fire adapted acres across the United States. Last year, the Conservancy led controlled burns on nearly 105,000 acres of land it owns. Annually, the organization assists the Service in burns on approximately 22,000 acres of the Refuge System.

Historically, natural fires were a common occurrence in the United States.

They cleared overgrowth, restored nutrients to the soil, and “rebooted” the cycle of life across a patchwork of habitats. All told, around two-thirds of America’s forests and grasslands evolved to need the restorative power of fire at least once every 30 years.

The Service manages a network of fire-adapted lands in all 50 states and every U.S. territory, and needs to use prescribed fire on 400,000-800,000 acres per year. Fire is a critical habitat management tool, along with mechanical thinning, herbicides and other methods. More than 2,000 Service staff also cooperates with their federal, state and local partners to respond to wildfires.

The Nature Conservancy is a private, global, not-for-profit organization that works to protect the lands and waters on which all life depends. In the United States, the Conservancy leads the national Fire Learning Network along with multiple federal partners, including the Service, National Park Service, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service.

Over the past 11 years, working under less formal local agreements, the Service and the Conservancy have worked in 39 states with 1,150 community partners to advance collaborative conservation and train more than 2,400 fire workers. It is believed that this national partnership will expand the positive impact these two organizations have on conservation and the protection of our national treasures.

 

 

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July 13, 2011

Kaibab National Forest

 

Using Fire to Achieve Resource Objectives

 

WILLIAMS, AZ – With the onset of the monsoons, Kaibab National Forest fire managers are evaluating conditions and looking at opportunities to use wildland fire to achieve multiple resource objectives. Recent precipitation, higher humidity and increased fuel moisture has changed the forest noticeably from that of just a few weeks ago and the fire danger has decreased significantly.
Over the coming months, if conditions are appropriate, managers may decide to use lightning-caused fire and prescribed fire, including broadcast burning and pile burning, to improve forest health, reduce hazardous fuels, protect cultural resources, and enhance wildlife habitat.    


Some people may question why fire would be managed across the landscape of the Kaibab National Forest when so many acres have already burned in Arizona this year.  One of the important goals of the fire management program is to return fire to its proper role in a fire-adapted ecosystem. Many areas of the forest have had fire excluded for too long which has lowered the forest’s defense against insects, disease, and high intensity fire. However, every time fire can be managed safely across the landscape, another protective layer is added to the forest that can help prevent future intense wildfires.  


If there is smoke in the air, it may mean wildland fire is being used to achieve multiple resource objectives on the Kaibab National Forest. Concerted efforts will be made to keep the public informed about fire activity and smoke.


For more information, please call Punky Moore, Fire Information Officer, 928-635-5653.

 

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December 2, 2005

Coconino National Forest

 

Prescribed Fire Accomplishments

 

Flagstaff- Across the national forests of the Southwest, restoring fire-adapted ecosystems is the central priority of much of the work of the US Forest Service. Returning fire to the landscape under carefully planned conditions, also known as prescribed fire, is a key component. This fall prescribed fire specialists on the Coconino National Forest accomplished substantial progress in meeting that goal.

Selective thinning and prescribed fire meet the dual forest restoration objectives of reducing the wildfire risk to adjacent communities and improving forest health. Through the current fiscal year, 22,000 acres on the Coconino are targeted to be treated with either thinning, broadcast or pile burning. So far this fall, 18,000 acres have been treated with prescribed fire, with about two-thirds of that acreage considered Wildland Urban Interface, that critical overlap of forest and communities at risk of catastrophic wildfire. Last year, the Coconino treated 16,000 acres with thinning and prescribed fire.

“We appreciate the patience of residents affected by smoke from prescribed burning. We’ve heard from folks who say they understand the importance of this work, and can put with some smoke if they know to expect it,” according to Russ Copp, Coconino National Forest Fuels Specialist.

With the onset of winter precipitation, crews plan to burn piles of slash, branches and small trees leftover from thinning projects. In northern Arizona, fire season can linger until winter brings adequate snowpack. Fire fighters may ignite a planned prescribed fire one day, and suppress an unplanned, human-caused fire the next. Since abandoned campfires are still a concern, campers are reminded to drown with water and dirt, stir, and feel to make sure your campfire are cold and dead out.

 

 


 

 

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