U.S. Forest Service
Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests
30 South Chiricahua Drive
Springerville, AZ 85938
Kacy Ellsworth 928-333-6280
Black Mesa Ranger District Plan Prescribed Burns within Rim Lakes Prescribed Burn Area
Springerville, AZ – November 13, 2019 – Black Mesa Ranger District on the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests planned to conduct prescribed burns within the Rim Lakes Prescribed Burn area from November 5, 2019 through November 15, 2019. However, due to unfavorable conditions, the prescribed burns were postponed. Fire managers continued to monitor conditions. The appropriate prescriptions were met and now plan to conduct prescribed burns for the Crook Prescribed Burn Block beginning tomorrow, November 14, 2019, through this Saturday, November 16, 2019.
The Crook Prescribed Burn Block will include Forest Roads 300, FR 105, FR 235 and dozer line between FR 235 and FR 105. The burn block is approximately 1,659 acres. Smoke will likely be visible from Hwy 260 and the Rim Lakes Recreation areas, the communities of Forest Lakes, Christopher Creek, Young, Colcord Estates and Heber-Overgaard. Lingering smoke may be present for up to one week after ignitions are complete. Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory or heart disease are encouraged to take precautionary measures. Information on air quality and active prescribed burns can be found on Arizona Department of Environmental Quality’s webpage: https://azdeq.gov/.
Prescribed burning provides many benefits and is essential to maintaining healthy forest ecosystems. This prescribed burn is a follow up to previous mechanical treatments within parts of the units. It provides habitat diversity, recycles plant nutrients into the soil and encourages new growth for a variety of plants used by wildlife and livestock. Prescribed burning of forest ground fuels also reduces the threat of large scale wildfire impacts to private lands.
Once ignition occurs, crews will be on scene from ignition until there is no longer a threat of escape from the project boundaries.