Inyo National Forest and Devils Postpile National Monument Announce Plans for Inter-Agency Prescribed Burning
Inyo National Forest (INF) and Devils Postpile National Monument (DEPO) will begin preparations for an interagency prescribed fire on 158 acres in the Reds Meadow Valley, Madera County, CA. The project is located east of the Devils Postpile Ranger Station and west of the Sotcher Lake Day Use Site.
The project goal is to reduce hazardous fuels and thus create wildfire defensible space around the DEPO ranger station, administrative facilities and campground. This defensible space will promote public and firefighter safety should a wildfire occur here in the future.
INF and DEPO will work with the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District to fulfill smoke management objectives and Federal and State air quality standards. The prescribed fire project will occur when weather and fuel moisture conditions will allow for generally low to moderate intensity prescribed burning, likely in the latter half of October 2015. Existing roads and trails will be used as fire containment lines. Fire crews will use chainsaws to thin small trees on 31 acres adjacent to Reds Meadow Road and the DEPO access road. This thinning will moderate risk of fire torching into the tops of larger trees and thus minimize impacts to scenic quality in highly visible areas along the roads.
The access road to Devils Postpile National Monument will be closed along with all trails and access to the Devils Postpile formation during the prescribed burn implementation. Traffic control will be in effect on the Reds Meadow Road during the 2 to 3 days when prescribed burning occurs. Rainbow falls will still be accessible via the Rainbow falls trail during this time.
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Prescribed Pile Burning
Crews are targeting 11 acres of piles for treatment today. Smoke may be visible from the Town of Mammoth and Mammoth Mt ski area.
Fire crews are burning piles in the Reds Meadow area today, taking advantage of the recent storms to safely achieve needed fuels reduction. Expect smoke visible from Mammoth Mountain, Mammoth Lakes, and Devils Postpile National Monument. This is part of a dedicated effort to reduce fuels after the tree blow down event of 2011.
The Inyo National Forest is conducting pile burning today east of Devils Postpile National Monument and West of Satcher Lake in the Red’s Meadow Area. 41 Acres of piles are targeted for treatment today. Smoke may be visible from the Mammoth Lakes area.
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Reds Meadow Pile Burning
Update, December 9th.
The pile burning at Red’s Meadow has been postponed. Crews are looking for more snow coverage in the area and will re-evaluate after the storm passes. Crews are going to shift their attention to the Sawmill Piles along Highway 203 and the Scenic Loop above Mammoth Lakes (near Wooley’s Play Area and then leading east and down the Scenic Loop Road). This project will start Wednesday, December 10th, weather and air quality conditions permitting.
Fire crews will start ignitions on the Reds Meadow piles, weather and air quality conditions permitting. Forty-one acres are planned for today (Tuesday, December 9th) and additional units may be completed in the next few days before the forecast storm. Expect smoke visible from Mammoth Lakes, Mammoth Mountain, and Devils Postpile. According to officials at the Inyo National Forest, this continues the ongoing and substantial work to reduce fuel loads and restore natural habitat in the wake of the Reds Meadow wind event that caused extensive tree blow down.
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