Rangers begin prescribed burns

The Kern River Ranger District of the Sequoia National Forest will begin its Hazardous Fuels Reduction project with three mountaintop burns. Prescribed fires will be conducted when weather and fuel moisture conditions are within defined parameters to safely accomplish the project objectives.

Fire managers work closely with the Eastern Kern and San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control Districts to manage smoke production and reduce impacts. The fuels reduction projects may start as early as next week.

The Greenhorn Mountain project, adjacent to the community of Alta Sierra and south of Shirley Meadow, consists of both broadcast and pile burning.

The Breckenridge project is located along Road #28S62, south of the Breckenridge subdivision, and consists of slash piles.

The Kern Plateau project consists of 30-50 piles along the roadside and near the Blackrock Station.

The objectives of the fuel reduction projects are to make conifer forest and other associated wildlife habitat more resilient to wildfire through the reintroduction of managed fire into the ecosystem, reduce hazardous accumulations of vegetation and fuels, reduce overall fire danger to firefighters and the public and build resilience to future catastrophic wildfires.

Impacts to the local communities and forest visitors include visible smoke from most communities surrounding Isabella Lake, as well as the California Hot Springs and Glennville areas.

The Kern Plateau burning will be visible to those traveling across Sherman Pass Vista and into Kennedy Meadows. There may be temporary “as needed for public safety” closures on the Unal Trail located on Greenhorn Summit and various forest roads.

Prescribed burn efforts will continue throughout the winter as weather and available resources permit. Check for current information at https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/ when burning starts.

For more information contact John Lange at 760-376-3781, ext. 656, weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Story First Published: 2019-10-18