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Monday, September 12, 2016

Fall Burning Planned on the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests

Kamiah, Idaho (September 9, 2016) - The Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests will be conducting fall prescribed burns beginning as early as Saturday, September 10, 2016, and continuing through September and into October until weather or air quality conditions are no longer favorable.  Roads and trail heads that lead into these areas will be posted with caution signs and a map of the prescribed fire locations. 

Powell Ranger Station is planning to broadcast burn a 20 acre unit in the Saddle Camp area along FS road 5601.  Smoke may be seen along FS road 107 and FS road 500.

Machine piles in the Saddle Camp and Granite Pass areas within the vicinity of the Powell Divide Timber Sale, along with hand piles near Rocky Point Lookout and the Powell Ranger Station, are also targeted for burning.

Moose Creek Ranger District is planning pile burning in the Johnson Bar area and the Swiftwater and Iron Mountain timber sale areas.  As weather and conditions allow prescribed fire treatments may be applied to 3 units in the O’Hara area.  Visitors may see smoke and meet forest personnel along FS roads 470 (Coolwater) and FS road 464 (O’Hara) during burn operations.

Lochsa Ranger Station as part of the North Lochsa Face Project is planning a landscape burn in the Middle Butte area north of FS road 483.  The prescribed fire treatment is estimated to be 1,000 acres.  The purpose of the burn is to reintroduce fire to the landscape, reduce woody fuel loadings which also reduces the potential for large, catastrophic wildfires, and allow vegetation, naturally found in these areas, to return.

Additional broadcast burning is planned in late September or early October in the Dead Canyon Timber Sale area near the upper portion of Deadman Creek and Cedar Knob and in the Cabin Timber Sale area near Cabin Creek.  The prescribed fire treatments will reduce woody debris to create openings for tree planting.

North Fork Ranger District is planning pile burning in the Middle Bugs Timber Sale area.  Piles are located near Lean-To Ridge off of FS road 555 and Beaver Dam Saddle off of FS road 103.

Palouse Ranger District is planning to broadcast burn 30 acres in the Abes Animals Timber Sale near Bovill and an additional 15 acres in the Robo Stew Timber Sale near the community of Elk River. 

Machine piles will be burned in the Cherry Pit, located near Helmer, and Abes Animal timber sale areas.    Hand piles located near Jerome Creek, near Harvard, and near the Palouse Ranger District are also targeted for burning. 

Salmon River Ranger District is scheduled to broadcast burn approximately 336 acres within the Festus, Adams Stewardship and the Buckshot timber sale areas.

Approximately 129 acres will be treated within the Festus Timber Sale southeast near White Bird Station off of FS road 9485.

45 acres located in two logging units within the Adams Stewardship Timber Sale near the Adams Work Center, FS road 221, and FS road 309.

Treatments in the Buckshot Timber Sale will total 162 acres and is located near Willow Flat off of FS road 354.

Prescribed fire treatments in various Ponderosa Pine plantations near McComas Meadows, Earthquake Basin, and in the Cove area at the head waters of Bully Creek are planned.  200-300 acres will be treated.

Red River Ranger District, weather permitting, will begin prescribed fire treatments September 12, 2016 and continue until weather and conditions no longer support burning operations.  Prescribed fire treatments are scheduled in the Red River Meadows area and the Soda Creek area. 

Acres and locations scheduled include:  Approximately 100 acres in the 66 Timber Sale located on the west side of Red River Meadows and below FS road 1800 (Cole Porter Road), 80 acres, Looney 2 Timber Sale, east of FS road 222 along FS road 1806 (Loon Creek Road), 14 acres, Blanco Timber Sale, east of FS road 222 and north of FS road 1183 (Blanco Road), 100 acres, Jungle Trail Timber Sale, located between FS road 234 (Red River Hot Springs Road) and FS road 1172 (Soda Creek Road), and 200 acres in the French Gulch Timber Sale along FS road 9822 (French Gulch Road).

Fire personnel will work closely with the Idaho/Montana Airshed Group, the National Weather Service, and the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality to insure that smoke impacts are minimized. 

Smoke from these prescribed fires will be much less than what would be expected from a wildfire.  If smoke concentrations approach air quality standards fire ignition may be delayed until air quality improves.  Residual smoke may be visible for up to 2 weeks following ignition, but most of the smoke from the fires will dissipate 1-2 days after ignition.

Specific information on the location and timing of these prescribed burns are available at each of the district offices.  Powell Ranger Station – Matt Young or Brandon Cichowski, 208-942-3113, Moose Creek Ranger District – Tim Schaeffer or Aaron Skinner, 208-926-4258, Lochsa Ranger Station – Sean Gaines or Neal Cox, 208-926-4274, North Fork Ranger District – Mike Lubke or TC Peterson, 208-476-4541, Palouse Ranger District – Lisa Spinelli or Alan Carlson, 208-875-1131, Salmon River Ranger District – Mike Blinn or Kevin Barger, 208-983-1950, Red River Ranger District – Josh Bransford or Tom McLeod, 208-842-2245.