CARSON CITY, Nevada…As part of the Carson Ranger District Hazardous Fuels Reduction Project, Forest Service fire crews will begin prescribed fire under-burning near Grover’s Hot Spring State Park in the Markleeville area off of Hot Springs Road located in Alpine County, California, starting around March 10, 2014, through April of 2014, weather and fuel conditions permitting.
“Prescribed fire is an efficient way of removing woody debris, providing ecosystem benefits, and reducing the risk of catastrophic wildfire and risk to firefighters in the event of a large fire,” said Steve Howell, District Fuels Specialist. This burn will also improve forest health and wildlife habitat.
Residents can expect to see some brown needles on the lower portions of tree crowns following burning activities and some tree mortality. These effects are all part of the objective of the burn. Trees with brown needles on the lower sections of the crown following the burn are not dead; these brown needles will fall off over time. The objective is to allow for fire to naturally prune the tree’s crown, lessening the chance of mortality in a large wildfire.
Fire crews are currently monitoring weather conditions to identify timeframes that would be suitable for effective prescribed burning of brush and understory vegetation. Approximately 20 acres of understory vegetation will be treated this spring using Forest Service hand crews and engines. Ignition is expected to take approximately two days, with weather and fuels permitting. Prescribed fire notices have been posted near residences near the project area notifying of the upcoming prescribed burn. Visitors and residents can expect to see smoke when the burns are occurring.
Markleeville area visitors may experience travel delays near the burn.
This project may have some short-term impacts on air quality levels, but air quality levels will comply with all State and Federal air quality regulations. Any burning activity will be accomplished during weather conditions that would minimize impacts of smoke on communities. All burning is done within parameters set forth in an approved burn plan and conform to the Great Basin Air Quality Management District standards.
Learn more about this release by contacting Steve Howell, Fuels Specialist, at 775-884-8114.
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