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Pile burning to begin on three projects near Tusayan

Fire moves across the ground through dead pine needles during an earlier fire in 2019. (Photo/InciWeb)

Fire moves across the ground through dead pine needles during an earlier fire in 2019. (Photo/InciWeb)

TUSAYAN, Ariz. – Fire managers plan to conduct pile burning beginning Nov. 21 and continuing through the middle of next week on the Tusayan Ranger District.

The piles are the result of forest restoration projects, and the purpose of burning them is to reduce forest fuels that could contribute to high-intensity wildfires. Fire managers will continue to seek opportunities throughout the winter to conduct pile burns. Areas to be treated when conditions are favorable are as follows:

West of Grand Canyon Airport – 375 acres of piles are located north of Forest Road 335 and along FR 2604.

East of Highway 64 – 144 acres of piles are located about 2 miles south of the Town of Tusayan and north of FR 2708.

East of Ten-X Campground – 189 acres of piles are located north of FR 688 near Charley Tank.

North of Russell Tank in the Russell Project area. Forty-four acres of piles are located south of FR 310 and north of Russell Tank.

There are no road or trail closures expected with any of the pile burns planned for the Tusayan Ranger District. Minimal to light smoke impacts are anticipated in the immediate vicinity of the pile burns. Smoke production from burning piles tends to be less than from broadcast prescribed fires, as piles typically burn rapidly and over a shorter duration. However, fire managers will be monitoring smoke production and adjusting the number of acres of piles to be ignited based on observed impacts.

Kaibab National Forest is part of a fire-adapted ecosystem and is dependent on fire to play a natural role in maintaining forest health. Objectives for these pile burns include reducing fuels resulting from previous forest restoration projects and improving overall forest health and resiliency.

The public can view approved prescribed fires for any given day on the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality’s website at https://smoke.azdeq.gov/. Prescribed fires on the Kaibab National Forest begin with the forest’s designator “KNF.” More information about smoke and public health, visit http://bit.ly/SmokeHealthAwareness.

Information provided by Kaibab National Forest

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