Hiking/Backcountry

Winter pile burning planned for Boulder and Clear Creek Ranger Districts

BOULDER – The Boulder and Clear Creek Ranger Districts of the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests and Pawnee National Grassland plan to take advantage of changing winter weather conditions to burn slash piles resulting from multiple fuels reductions and hazardous tree removal projects.

Firefighters will spend the upcoming winter months burning piles in a number of locations across the districts. When and where burning occurs depends on meeting the conditions of the prescribed fire plan. These piles are only ignited under certain conditions such as favorable weather conditions, snow cover, smoke dispersal and forest service fire crew staffing. The areas are monitored after burning is completed. Public and firefighter safety is always the number one priority in burning operations.

Last season, the districts burned 261 machine piles and 6,334 hand-made piles. Hand piles are completed with crews using chainsaws and the resulting cut material is piled for burning. Crews may burn as many as 100 to 450 smaller piles a day at each location if favorable conditions are met, which includes a minimum of 3 inches of snow cover. Some areas within the district also have larger machine piles. Machine piles are built using logging equipment. Typically, one to 40 of these could be burned at each location per day with a minimum of 6 inches of snow cover.

Areas on the Boulder Ranger District with hand and machine piles ready for burning are:
• The James Creek Project near the communities of Jamestown, Gold Hill, Ward and Bar K subdivision and Gold Lake Ranch.
• The Sugarloaf Project near the community of Sunset, Silver Springs and Swiss Peaks Subdivision.
• The Saint Vrain Project near the communities of Allenspark, Big Elk Meadows, Lyons and in the vicinity of Button Rock Reservoir.
• The West Magnolia Project near the community of Nederland.

Areas on the Clear Creek Ranger District with hand piles ready for burning are:
• The Yankee Hill Project near Central City and Black Hawk.

To receive regular updates about burning in your area, send an email to BRDvis@fs.fed.us

Also visit the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests and Pawnee National Grasslands website at http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/arp/landmanagement/resourcemanagement/?cid=fsm91_058291 or follow them on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/usfsarp.

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