North Zone fire managers announce plans for 2017-2018 prescribed fire season on Kaibab Plateau

FREDONIA – North Zone fire managers on the North Kaibab Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest and the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park have announced locations where they plan to complete prescribed fire projects starting in October and continuing through the spring of 2018. Approximately 13,850 acres could be eligible for treatment across the plateau, but the implementation of each project will only occur when weather, fuel moisture, and smoke dispersal conditions are within the defined prescription parameters.

The role that prescribed fires play includes decreasing risks to life, resources, and property. Fire managers carefully plan prescribed fires, initiating them only under environmental conditions that are favorable to assure firefighter and visitor safety and to achieve the desired objectives, which include reducing accumulations of hazard fuels, maintaining the natural role of fire in a fire-adapted ecosystem, and protecting sensitive cultural and natural resources.

This season’s planned treatment areas are as follows:

Thompson Unit: The Thompson prescribed burn unit (Thompson Rx) consists of dense vegetation and heavy dead and down fuels that are predominantly composed of spruce, fir, and aspen. The ignition portion of the Thompson Unit is approximately 2,000 acres, and the project area is located both on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and the North Kaibab Ranger District, on the east side of AZ Highway 67 and directly east of the North Rim entrance station. Objectives include reducing accumulations of hazardous fuels by 40 percent.

Smoke impacts may include Highway 67, the North Rim Entrance Station, DeMotte Park and portions of the Grand Canyon including the Nankoweep area and Kwagunt Valley area. Additional smoke impacts may occur in the Marble Canyon area and as far away as Page.

Moquitch 3 Unit: The Moquitch 3 prescribed burn unit (Moquitch 3 Rx) consists of vegetation that is predominantly ponderosa pine with scattered clumps of aspen and patches of New Mexico locust. The unit is approximately 3,500 acres and is located about 6 miles south of Jacob Lake. Objectives include reducing accumulations of hazardous fuels down to 5 tons-per-acre and stimulating aspen regeneration in areas where mature clones exist.

Smoke impacts may include Jacob Lake, AZ Highway 67 and AZ Highway 89A.

Tipover East Unit: The Tipover East prescribed burn unit (Tipover Rx) consists of vegetation that is predominantly first-entry mixed conifer, which in this case means the area has not seen fire disturbance in more than 100 years and therefore contains above-average fuel loads potentially posing a higher risk of a large-scale wildfire. Fire managers plan to treat approximately 2,500 acres for this season. The unit is located on a strip of forested land along the boundary of Grand Canyon National Park and the Kaibab National Forest west of Highway 67. Objectives include reducing accumulations of hazardous fuels and protecting sensitive cultural and natural resources.

Smoke impacts may include Highway 89A, Highway 67, Marble Canyon and other high-use visitor areas.

North Rim Slopes Unit: The North Rim Slopes prescribed burn unit (Slopes Rx) also consists of vegetation that is predominantly first-entry mixed conifer. Fire managers plan to treat approximately 2,500 acres for this season. The unit is located along the north boundary of Grand Canyon National Park, west of Highway 67. Objectives include reducing accumulations of hazardous fuels by 25 percent and returning fire to a fire-adapted ecosystem.

Smoke impacts may include Highway 67, the North Rim Entrance Station, DeMotte Park and portions of the Grand Canyon.

Wildhorse Unit: The Wildhorse prescribed burn unit (Wildhorse Rx) consists of vegetation that is predominantly Ponderosa pine, Pinion pine, Juniper and a few scattered clumps of Aspen. The unit is approximately 2,800 acres and is located near Jacob Lake. Objectives include reducing accumulations of hazardous fuels down to 5 tons-per-acre and protecting sensitive cultural and natural resources.

Smoke impacts may include Forest Service roads north of Jacob Lake, Highway 89A, Jacob Lake developed area and the LeFevre overlook.

High Severity Edge Unit: The High Severity Edge prescribed burn unit (High Severity Edge Rx) consists of vegetation that is predominantly ponderosa pine and mixed conifer. Fire managers plan to treat approximately 500 acres for this season, and the unit is located on the Walhalla Plateau, west and south of Cape Royal Road. Objectives include limiting high severity fire effects in forested areas adjacent to or near patches of past high-severity wildfires.

Smoke impacts may include Highway 67, the North Rim Entrance Station, DeMotte Park and portions of the Grand Canyon.

Bright Angel Unit: The Bright Angel prescribed burn unit (Bright Angel Rx) consists of vegetation that is predominantly ponderosa pine. Fire managers plan to treat approximately 50 acres this season, and objectives include reducing fuel accumulations, creating a defensible space around structures in the developed area on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and protecting sensitive cultural and natural resources.

Smoke impacts may include portions of the Grand Canyon.

North Zone Pile Burns (Pile Rx): Fire managers will also spend time preparing to burn piles of woody debris as resources and weather conditions allow. These piles are typically composed of vegetative materials, commonly called slash, such as tops, limbs, branches, brush, and other recently cut miscellaneous materials resulting from forest management activities such as thinning, pruning, timber harvesting, and wildfire hazard mitigation. Upon arranging slash into compact, teepee-shapes and allowing the piles to dry, fire managers will burn the piles during safe burning conditions, generally after a snowfall or significant wetting-rain events.

During prescribed fires, motorists are cautioned that smoke may be present in short durations, which may impact roads and populated areas, and are reminded to use caution, drive slowly, turn on headlights, and avoid stopping in areas where fire personnel is working.

As a reminder, all prescribed burning 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 on any given day, please visit http://www.azdeq.gov/environ/air/smoke/index.html.

Before any given prescribed fire operations begin, additional information will be released regarding location, timing and anticipated smoke impacts. Fire information is also available through the following resources: Inciweb at https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5632/; Kaibab National Forest Fire Information Phone Line (928) 635-8311; Text Message – text ‘follow kaibabnf’ to 40404; https://www.nps.gov/grca/learn/management/fire_info.htm.

Prescribed Fire Alert: Fire managers plan burn north of Jacob Lake

FREDONIA – North Zone fire managers plan to conduct a prescribed burn within the North Kaibab Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest as early as Thursday, June 1, if weather, fuel moistures, air quality and smoke dispersion remain favorable for meeting both forest health and public safety goals and objectives.

Hand and aerial ignitions on the 3,764-acre unit, approximately 2 miles north of Jacob Lake, could continue for several days depending on forecasted weather, fuel conditions and resource availability. By further reducing accumulated forest fuels that exist in the area, fire managers plan to reduce surface fuel loads within the unit to approximately 5 tons per acre. Currently, fuel loading through much of the Basin Unit can be characterized as moderate with an average of 10-to-15 tons-per-acre across the entire unit, according to North Zone fuels specialist Dave Robinson.

In the interest of both firefighter and public safety, forest visitors are reminded to obey all traffic signs and use caution when traveling in the vicinity of the prescribed fire as firefighters and fire-related traffic will be present, and while winds are expected to disperse the smoke to the north-northeast, motorists are cautioned to anticipate light smoke along Highway 89A throughout the day and settle into lower elevations and drainages overnight through midmorning. However, fire managers will strive to minimize smoke impacts to the community as much as possible, and will only commence ignitions when conditions exist that will allow for adequate ventilation.

As a reminder, implementation of prescribed fires is dependent on weather and fuel conditions including winds, temperature, humidity, moisture of the vegetation and ventilation conditions for dispersal of smoke, as well as prior coordination with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. For additional information on the Smoke Management Division of the ADEQ and to view prescribed burns authorized on any given day, please visit www.azdeq.gov/programs/air-quality-programs/smoke-management.

Additional fire information for the Kaibab National Forest can be obtained through the following sources:

· Fire Information Recorded Hotline: 928-635-8311
· Find us on Facebook: @KaibabNF
· Twitter: www.twitter.com/KaibabNF
· (Text ‘follow kaibabnf’ to 40404 to receive text messages.)
· Kaibab website “News & Events”: www.fs.usda.gov/kaibab
· InciWeb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5194/

Prescribed burns planned to begin this week near Tusayan

TUSAYAN – Crews plan to begin working on two prescribed burns near Tusayan beginning Tuesday and will likely continue burning for several days providing weather conditions remain favorable for meeting forest health objectives and smoke dispersion.

Ignitions will occur tomorrow on 250 acres of slash piles on the Flying J prescribed fire project located just west of Grand Canyon airport. On Wednesday operations will shift to the Reed prescribed fire project where fire officials hope to treat approximately 600 acres using a broadcast burn. This unit is located about 6 miles east of Tusayan.

The removal of cured slash piles is critical for reducing hazardous fuels that can often threaten rural communities, particularly when they are located adjacent to developed infrastructure and residential homes. Broadcast burning is utilized to introduce fire to ground surfaces over much wider areas which also consume accumulations of dead and down debris lessening the potential for a catastrophic wildfire.

Smoke is expected to disperse away from sensitive areas for both of these burns during the day. Residual smoke may settle into drainage and low lying areas overnight but will dissipate rapidly throughout the morning hours. Smoke may be visible from Highway 64 and from the communities of Grand Canyon, Valle and Tusayan. Light smoke may linger overnight and in the early morning hours.

Officials remind motorists to always use caution when driving on roadways where visibility may potentially be impacted by smoke. Fire managers work closely with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, partners in the Grand Canyon National Park, as well as surrounding Native American tribes to monitor air quality.

Notifications of upcoming prescribed burns are provided regularly throughout the season. The public can find this information online or through a recorded hotline. Contact your local Kaibab National Forest office for additional information.

• Inciweb: inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5160/
• Fire Information Recorded Hotline: 928-635-8311
• Facebook: www.facebook.com/KaibabNF/
• Twitter: twitter.com/kaibabnf (Text ‘follow kaibabnf’ to 40404 to receive text messages.)
• Kaibab website “News & Events”: www.fs.usda.gov/kaibab

Prescribed burn planned to begin Wednesday south of Tusayan

TUSAYAN – Crews plan to begin ignitions on a prescribed burn on the 681 acre Reed Prescribed Fire Project on Wednesday April 19 and intend to continue burning for approximately three days in the area if conditions remain favorable. The burn area is located approximately three miles south of the town of Tusayan.

Smoke may be visible from Highway 64 and in the communities of Valle and Tusayan. Light smoke may linger overnight and in the early morning hours. To minimize smoke impacts, fire managers will limit ignitions to approximately 200 acres per day and will only conduct ignitions when conditions exist that will allow smoke to ventilate away from sensitive areas.

“Because this prescribed fire will be burning immediately adjacent to Highway 64, we suggest that motorists slow down when driving through the area and use extreme caution due to firefighters working along the roadway and potential impacts to visibility.” said Fire Management Officer Quentin Johnson.

Smoke is expected to disperse to the east and northeast during the day. Residual smoke may settle into drainages and low lying areas overnight but will dissipate rapidly throughout the morning hours.

Prescribed fires are essential tools for restoring the forests in a fire-adapted ecosystem, and smoke is an unavoidable byproduct of these efforts. Fire managers strive to minimize smoke impacts to the community as much as possible. Burns occur when winds and other atmospheric conditions will push the majority of smoke away from homes and ultimately limit the number of days smoke is in the air. Fire managers work closely with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, partners in the Grand Canyon National Park, as well as surrounding Native American tribes to monitor air quality.

Notifications of upcoming prescribed burns are provided regularly throughout the season. The public can find this information online or through a recorded hotline. Contact your local Kaibab National Forest office for additional information.

 

Kaibab National Forest plans pile burns on Tusayan and Williams districts

WILLIAMS – Fire managers plan to burn piles on the Tusayan and Williams ranger districts of the Kaibab National Forest tomorrow and Friday. The piles are the result of forest restoration efforts, and the goal of burning them is to further reduce fuels that could feed high-intensity wildfire.

Tusayan Ranger District

Tusayan Ranger District fire managers plan to burn piles scattered within a 100-acre area tomorrow and Friday just west of the Town of Tusayan and Grand Canyon Airport. The piles have cured over the last two years and are expected to consume quickly. Winds on Thursday are expected to be from the southwest, which would push any smoke produced toward the northeast. However, fire managers anticipate that any smoke impacts to Tusayan or the airport would be very light. At night, downslope wind is expected to move smoke west away from Tusayan and the airport. On Friday, winds are predicted to be from the northeast, which should push any smoke produced southwest away from developed areas. No smoke impacts are anticipated for Tusayan or the airport Friday. No road or trail closures are expected.

Williams Ranger District

Williams Ranger District fire managers plan to burn piles scattered within a 52-acre area tomorrow and Friday near Kunde Knoll, about 8 miles south of Williams. Smoke is expected to drift to the north and northeast during the day and will be most noticeable in the immediate area surrounding the pile burn during ignitions and for a few hours afterward. Smoke impacts to any developed areas or nearby communities are expected to be light.

Also on Thursday and Friday, Williams fire managers plan to burn the single, large natural debris pile at Three Sisters Cinder Pit, located north of Cataract Lake about two miles northwest of Williams. Smoke is expected to be pushed north and northeast during daytime hours, away from Williams. However, light smoke may be noticeable in the northern portions of Williams during overnight hours.

No road or trail closures are expected with either pile burn on the Williams Ranger District.

General Information

Implementation of any particular prescribed fire, including a pile burn, is dependent on weather and fuel conditions including winds, temperature, humidity, moisture of the vegetation and ventilation conditions for dispersal of smoke. All prescribed fires are subject to approval by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. For additional information on the Smoke Management Division and to view prescribed burn authorizations for any given day, visit http://www.azdeq.gov/programs/air-quality-programs/smoke-management.

In the interest of safety, visitors are always reminded to use caution when traveling in the vicinity of prescribed fires, as firefighters, fire-related traffic and smoke may all be present.

Notifications of upcoming prescribed fires are provided regularly throughout the year. Members of the public can find this information through the following sources:

Kaibab National Forest plans pile burns on all districts this week

WILLIAMS — Fire managers plan to burn piles on each of the three ranger districts of the Kaibab National Forest starting tomorrow and continuing through Friday. The piles are the result of forest restoration efforts, and the goal of burning them is to further reduce fuels that could feed high-intensity wildfire.

North Kaibab Ranger District
North Zone fire managers plan to burn piles scattered within a 100-acre area between Tuesday and Friday just north of Jacob Lake. The piles are small and should consume quickly. Fire managers plan to ignite piles within 25-acre areas each day of the four days scheduled for burning. No significant smoke impacts are anticipated, as prevailing winds should push smoke north/northeast away from Highway 89A. No road or trail closures are expected. However, visitors should use caution and be aware of emergency vehicles in the area.

Tusayan Ranger District
Tusayan Ranger District fire managers plan to burn piles scattered within a 15-acre area Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday about a mile northwest of Grand Canyon Airport. The small piles have cured over the last two years and are expected to consume quickly. Fire managers plan to ignite piles within 5-acre areas early on each of the three mornings to allow plenty of time for good consumption and smoke dissipation during the day. They anticipate little to no smoke impacts to the Town of Tusayan, Grand Canyon Airport and Highway 64. No road or trail closures are expected.

Williams Ranger District
Williams Ranger District fire managers plan to burn piles scattered within a 37-acre area on one day between Tuesday and Friday near Cougar Park, which is about 5 miles south of Williams and just north of Coleman Knoll. Fire managers are monitoring weather conditions to determine which day will be most appropriate for completing ignitions on these piles. Some smoke may settle into the area immediately surrounding the pile burn in Cougar Park and Barney Flat. It may also be visible from County Road 73. No road or trail closures are expected.

Implementation of any particular prescribed fire, including a pile burn, is dependent on weather and fuel conditions including winds, temperature, humidity, moisture of the vegetation and ventilation conditions for dispersal of smoke. All prescribed fires are subject to approval by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. For additional information on the Smoke Management Division and to view prescribed burn authorizations for any given day, visit http://www.azdeq.gov/programs/air-quality-programs/smoke-management.

In the interest of safety, visitors are always reminded to use caution when traveling in the vicinity of prescribed fires, as firefighters, fire-related traffic and smoke may all be present.

Notifications of upcoming prescribed fires are provided regularly throughout the season. Members of the public can find this information through the following sources:

Kaibab National Forest prescribed fire projects continue near Pitman Valley

WILLIAMS — Fire managers with the Williams Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest plan to continue prescribed fire operations, known as the Green Base Prescribed Fire Project, in the Pitman Valley area north of Interstate 40, east of Highway 64 and west of Parks over the next week as weather conditions allow.

Today, fire managers are completing ignitions in the 5,141-acre Parks West area, part of the larger Green Base Prescribed Fire Project, which is bounded on the west by Forest Road 74, on the north by Pipeline Road, on the east by Forest Road 76 and on the south by Historic Route 66.

Fire managers then anticipate a two-day delay in prescribed fire operations tomorrow and Thursday due to predicted winds that aren’t expected to be favorable for fire effects and potential smoke impacts.

Map showing location of the Green Base Prescribed Fire Project on the Williams Ranger District, which is broken into two smaller units – Parks West and Dry Lake. - Kaibab Forest Service photo.

Map showing location of the Green Base Prescribed Fire Project on the Williams Ranger District, which is broken into two smaller units – Parks West and Dry Lake. – Kaibab Forest Service photo.


As soon as wind and weather conditions are again favorable, fire managers plan to move to the 9,040-acre Dry Lake area, the second portion of the larger Green Base Prescribed Fire Project, to begin operations. They anticipate starting ignitions Friday, if not sooner, and continuing for several days. The Dry Lake area is bounded on the west by Highway 64, on the north by Pipeline Road, on the east by Forest Road 74, and on the south by Historic Route 66, which parallels Interstate 40 in spots.

Smoke from the prescribed fire projects near Pitman Valley is expected to be very visible from Interstate 40, Highway 64, Red Lake, Spring Valley and the Kendrick Mountain area. Kaibab National Forest fire managers are coordinating with adjacent forest managers regarding potential smoke impacts to local communities due to multiple prescribed fire projects being planned over the next week.

Last week, fire managers completed treatment of the McCracken Project, located about 6 miles south of Williams between Coleman Lake and Barney Knoll. No additional ignitions are immediately planned in this area.

Kaibab National Forest fire managers have a number of other prescribed fires planned for fall and winter on each of its three ranger districts depending on fuel moistures and weather conditions. Public notification will be provided prior to the implementation of additional projects.

Fire plays a beneficial role in maintaining the ecological stability of many landscapes, including the Kaibab National Forest. Managers use prescribed fire as a practical means to reduce risks associated with uncharacteristic wildfires that can pose significant threats to public health and safety.

Forest managers recognize that prescribed fires may create negative impacts to air quality at times. However, these efforts, which are essential to restoring forests in a fire-adapted ecosystem, can also significantly reduce the amount and limit the duration of smoke impacts associated with uncontrolled wildfire situations in the future. In order to minimize smoke impacts to businesses and residences during prescribed fires, managers closely monitor wind direction and ventilation and adjust operations accordingly.

In the interest of safety, forest visitors are reminded to obey all traffic signs and use caution when traveling in the vicinity of prescribed fires as firefighters and fire-related traffic will be present.

All prescribed fires on the Kaibab National Forest are subject to approval by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. For additional information on the Smoke Management Division and to view prescribed burn authorizations for any given day, visit https://www.azdeq.gov/programs/air-quality-programs/smoke-management.

Additional fire information for the Kaibab National Forest can be obtained through the following sources: InciWeb http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4112/#; Kaibab National Forest Fire Information Phone Line (928) 635-8311; Text Message – text ‘follow kaibabnf’ to 40404; Facebook and Twitter @KaibabNF.

North Zone fire managers plan for Tipover Unit

FREDONIA – North Zone fire managers on the North Kaibab Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest and the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park plan to conduct additional hazardous fuels reduction treatments within the Tipover East prescribed fire burn unit as early as Tuesday.

Fire managers anticipate treating between 1,000 to 3,000 acres pending favorable weather conditions and resource availability with the goal of reducing the dead and downed woody fuels by 30 to 60 percent. Currently, fuel loading through much of the unit can be characterized as moderate to heavy with approximately 36 to 55 tons per acre and averaging approximately 40 tons per acre across the entire unit. To date fire managers have treated more than 6,000 acres in the last few weeks.

“Over the past month we have accomplished a lot of prescribed burning; we are very pleased with the results we have seen so far. Overall fuel loadings within the treated areas have been reduced, wildlife habitat is being protected and enhanced, we are moving towards desired conditions that promote healthy forests, and we have continued to return fire to our fired adapted ecosystems,” said North Zone Fuels Specialist Dave Robinson.

The total Tipover East project area is 10,296 acres in size, but the entire project area will not be burned at once. Fire managers have divided the project area into separate burn units that will be treated over the next 3 to 5 years. It is located on a strip of forested land along the boundary of Grand Canyon National Park and the Kaibab National Forest west of Highway 67 and is bound by FS 223 on the north, portions of FS 270 and Highway 67 on the east, the 2003 Poplar fire history area on the south, and portions of the NPS-W4, FS 268B and FS 268 roads on the west.

In the interest of safety, forest visitors are reminded to obey all traffic signs and use caution when traveling in the vicinity of the prescribed fire burn units as firefighters and fire-related traffic will be in the area. Smoke is expected to be visible from Highway 89A, Highway 67, Marble Canyon and other high-use visitor areas. However, fire managers will strive to minimize smoke impacts to the community as much as possible. Smoke is expected to disperse during the daytime, but residual smoke may settle into drainages and low-lying areas overnight. Fire managers will only commence ignitions when conditions exist that will allow smoke to adequately ventilate.

As a reminder, implementation of prescribed fires is dependent on weather and fuel conditions including winds, temperature, humidity, moisture of the vegetation and ventilation conditions for dispersal of smoke, as well as prior coordination with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. For additional information on the Smoke Management Division of the ADEQ and to view prescribed burns authorized on any given day, please visit www.azdeq.gov/programs/air-quality-programs/smoke-management.

Kaibab National Forest prescribed fire projects to begin south of Williams

WILLIAMS —Fire managers with the Williams Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest plan to conduct two prescribed fire projects south of Williams beginning Monday, Oct. 10, and continuing through next week.

The first of the two prescribed fire projects to be implemented will be the McCracken East Project, which is located east of County Road 73 near Barney Knoll 6 miles south of Williams. About 839 acres are scheduled to be treated using hand ignition with drip torches over two days. Smoke from the McCracken East Project is likely to be noticeable near Dogtown Lake, Sherwood Forest Estates, Pittman Valley, Parks, and Bellemont. While major smoke impacts are not anticipated in Williams, it is possible that smoke will be visible from the community and from Interstate 40.

If conditions remain favorable following completion of the McCracken East Project, fire managers will move slightly west to treat about 1,693 acres in the McCracken West Project, which is located just west of County Road 73 in the vicinity of Ham Tank and Kunde Knoll 7 miles south of Williams. Smoke impacts from the McCracken West Project are expected to be similar to those of McCracken East. Fire managers plan to use a helicopter to complete aerial ignitions on the burn unit over two days.

Kaibab National Forest fire managers have a number of other prescribed fires planned for fall and winter depending on fuel moistures and weather conditions. Following implementation of the McCracken projects, they will consider other locations on the Williams Ranger District to complete similar fuels reduction efforts. Public notification will be provided prior to the implementation of additional projects.

Fire plays a beneficial role in maintaining the ecological stability of many landscapes, including the Kaibab National Forest. Managers use prescribed fire as a practical means to reduce risks associated with uncharacteristic wildfires that can pose significant threats to public health and safety.

Forest managers recognize that prescribed fires may create negative impacts to air quality at times. However, these efforts, which are essential to restoring forests in a fire-adapted ecosystem, can also significantly reduce the amount and limit the duration of smoke impacts associated with uncontrolled wildfire situations in the future. In order to minimize smoke impacts to businesses and residences during prescribed fires, managers closely monitor wind direction and ventilation and adjust operations accordingly.

In the interest of safety, forest visitors are reminded to obey all traffic signs and use caution when traveling in the vicinity of prescribed fires as firefighters and fire-related traffic will be present.

All prescribed fires on the Kaibab National Forest are subject to approval by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. For additional information on the Smoke Management Division and to view prescribed burn authorizations for any given day, visit https://www.azdeq.gov/programs/air-quality-programs/smoke-management.

Additional fire information for the Kaibab National Forest can be obtained through the following sources: InciWeb http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4112/#; Kaibab National Forest Fire Information Phone Line (928) 635-8311; Text Massage – text ‘follow kaibabnf’ to 40404.

North Zone fire managers plan for additional treatments ahead

FREDONIA — In the last two weeks, firefighters from the National Park Service and the U.S. Forest Service have worked together as the North Zone Interagency Fire Management Program to successfully complete more than 4,000 acres of hazardous fuels reduction treatments on the North Kaibab Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest. This week fire managers continue to track conditions for additional treatments within the Kaibab Plateau.

These hazardous fuels reduction treatments may start as early as Thursday beginning with the Jacob Ryan Lobo Unit if weather and fuel conditions remain favorable and extend into prescribed fire operations on the Tipover East Unit.

Jacob Ryan Lobo Unit (Lobo Rx): The unit is 1,952 acres and is bound by a series of dozer lines connecting Forest Service Road (FS) 248G, FS 636A, FS 636, FS 248, and FS 247 on the north, FS 248V to FS 248 to FS 248A on the south, FS 247 on the east, and FS 248A on the west.

Fuels within the Lobo prescribed fire burn unit are predominantly ponderosa pine, pinyon pine, juniper and a few scattered clumps of aspen. New Mexico locust and cliff rose can also be found throughout the project area, and goals include protecting human life and improvements, expediting the development of Northern goshawk habitat, increasing resilience to insects, disease and wildfire, and increasing the overall forest health and sustainability by returning fire to a fire-adapted ecosystem.

Tipover East Unit (Tipover East Rx): The total Tipover East project area is 10,296 acres in size, but the entire project area will not be burned at once. Fire managers have divided the project area into separate burn units that will be treated over the next three to five years. They are focusing on approximately 3,500 acres for this season. The total unit covers a strip of forested land along the boundary of Grand Canyon National Park and the Kaibab National Forest west of Highway 67 and is bound by FS 223 on the north, portions of FS 270 and Highway 67 on the east, the 2003 Poplar fire history area on the south, and portions of the NPS-W4, FS 268B and FS 268 roads on the west.

Fuels within the Tipover East prescribed fire burn unit are primarily a mixed conifer forest with occasional patches of spruce-fir forest, aspen forest, ponderosa pine forest, and grasslands. Fuel loading through much of the unit can be characterized as moderate to heavy, approximately 36 to 55 tons per acre with an average of about 40 tons per acre across the entire unit. One objective within the Tipover East burn unit is to reduce these dead and downed woody fuels by 30 to 60 percent.

In the interest of safety, forest visitors are reminded to obey all traffic signs and use caution when traveling in the vicinity of the prescribed fire burn units as firefighters and fire-related traffic will be in the area. Smoke is expected to be visible from Highway 89A, Highway 67, Marble Canyon and other high-use visitor areas; however, fire managers will strive to minimize smoke impacts to the community as much as possible. Smoke is expected to disperse during the daytime, but residual smoke may settle into drainages and low-lying areas overnight. However, it is expected to dissipate quickly as fire managers will only commence ignitions when conditions exist that will allow smoke to adequately ventilate.

As a reminder, implementation of prescribed fires is dependent on weather and fuel conditions including winds, temperature, humidity, moisture of the vegetation and ventilation conditions for dispersal of smoke, as well as prior coordination with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. For additional information on the Smoke Management Division of the ADEQ and to view prescribed burns authorized on any given day, please visit www.azdeq.gov/environ/air/smoke/index.html.

Notifications of upcoming prescribed burns will be provided regularly throughout the season. Additional information on current and upcoming North Kaibab Ranger District prescribed burns are provided through the following methods:

· Fire Information Recorded Hotline: 928-635-8311
· Twitter: www.twitter.com/KaibabNF (Text ‘follow kaibabnf’ to 40404 to receive text messages.)
· Kaibab website “News & Events”: www.fs.usda.gov/kaibab
· InciWeb: inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5021/