Prescribed Burning to Begin Next Week on Smokey Bear Ranger District

RUIDOSO, NM – December 7, 2012 – Fire officials on the Smokey Bear Ranger District plan to begin prescribed burning activities on projects around Ruidoso, NM, as early as Monday of next week. The burning operations will take place between December 10th and 21st, when favorable weather conditions are present. Prescribed fire updates will be posted on

Slash piles within the project areas will be eliminated by lighting the individual piles as firefighters carefully progress from one pile to the next. Ignitions are dependent upon weather conditions on the day of the burn and during the burning period. When current weather is not favorable for burning, operations are canceled or halted. Successful prescribed burning results in good smoke dispersal and desired fire effects. “These prescribed fire projects will reduce fuel loads, which can help minimize potential wildfire risks and impacts to the area,” said Dan Ray, District Fuels Specialist on the Smokey Bear Ranger District. “Public and firefighter safety are always primary objectives during all fire-related activities,” Ray added.  Projects include:

  • Eagle 1: 2.4 acre unit, located five miles north, northwest of Ruidoso, off of NM State Highway 532 (Ski Run Road).
  • Perk-Grindstone: 106 acre unit, located behind Smokey Bear Ranger Station (adjacent to Brady Canyon).
  • Blue Lake: 30 acre unit, located on Gavilan Ridge (above Homestead Estates and Lower Eagle Creek).
  • Stansell: 39 acre unit, located on the south side of NM State Highway 70, (east of Ruidoso Downs between Aqua Fria subdivision and Sierra Contracting).

During ignition operations, smoke may be visible from Ruidoso, Alto, and surrounding areas. Smoke may settle into drainages and lower elevations at night, but is expected to dissipate by late-morning, as daytime temperatures increase. In the event that smoke is encountered on travel ways, motorists are advised to reduce travel speeds and turn lights on.

These prescribed fire projects have been identified in the Greater Ruidoso and Lincoln County Community Wildfire Protection Plans (CWPP).  The CWPP’s are available at:

For more information about prescribed fire projects on the Smokey Bear Ranger District, please call the District Office at 575-257-4095, Monday through Friday, 7:30 am to 4:30 pm. Loretta Benavidez, Public Affairs Officer, may also be contacted, 575-430-5546 or  For information about the Lincoln National Forest, visit and follow us on Twitter at