Prescribed Burning to Resume on Smokey Bear Ranger District

RUIDOSO, NM – December 30, 2012 – Fire officials on the Smokey Bear Ranger District plan to resume prescribed burning activities on projects around Ruidoso, NM, during the first week of January. The burning operations will take place throughout the month of January, as weather conditions allow. Prescribed fire updates will be posted on  http://nmfireinfo.com/

Firefighters will continue to eliminate slash piles within the project areas by use of prescribed fire. Ignitions are dependent upon weather conditions on the day of the burn. When current weather is not favorable for burning, operations are canceled or halted. Firefighters monitor smoke emissions and burning operations so that the smoke impacts are minimal. “These projects will help continue to reduce fuel loads and lessen wildfire risks,” said Dan Ray, District Fuels Specialist on the Smokey Bear Ranger District. “We treated 30 acres on the Perk Grindstone project in December and we’ll be focused on the Stansell and Blue Lake projects next week.”  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, 30 acres treated in December – 76 acres http://premier-pharmacy.com/product/ativan/ still targeted for treatment, 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 Agua 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 projects have been identified in the Greater Ruidoso and Lincoln County Community Wildfire Protection Plans (CWPP).  The CWPP’s are available at: http://www.emnrd.state.nm.us/FD/FireMgt/cwpps.htm.

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 llbenavidez@fs.fed.us.  For information about the Lincoln National Forest, visit www.fs.usda.gov/lincoln and follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LincolnUSForest