Prescribed burns in Upper Colorado to cover 10,000 acres this spring
Fire officials in the Upper Colorado River area hope to burn more than 10,000 acres this spring in prescribed fires, which will help habitat for big game and other wildlife, it was announced Friday.
The Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire and Aviation Management Unit (UCR) announced Friday its plans for eight prescribed burns on White River National Forrest and BLM land in Pitkin, Garfield, Eagle and Rio Blanco counties. The dates are weather-dependent, but some locations could start soon, BLM public affairs spokesman David Boyd said Friday.
“It’s hard to find the right window in the spring because we have to have the right conditions,” Boyd said. “It could be as early as next week, but it really varies by location.”
There are two planned in Pitkin County this spring: 2,000 acres in the Braderick Creek burn (14 miles south/southwest of Carbondale, 2.5 miles west of Highway 133 and Redstone) and 500 acres for the Avalanche Creek burn (nine miles south of Carbondale, east of Highway 133).
In Eagle County near the Roaring Fork Valley, the Cattle Creek burn is set for 2,000 acres (seven miles north of Basalt, northeast of Highway 82).
Fire officials said the prescribed burns are “targeted to improve large game winter and transition range forage.”
The other potential burn areas in the URC this spring are:
French Creek: 1,500 acres; 6 miles west of Doterso, north of Interstate 70.
June Creek: 727 acres; 14 miles south of Silt.
West Divide: 2,700 acres; 14 miles south of Silt
Sheep Gulch: 240 acres; four miles north of Gypsum.
Rio Blanco County
Miller Creek: 500 acres; 12 miles east of Meeker
All burns are monitored by ground crews and fire engines. More information will be released in the days ahead of each burn, Boyd said.
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Officials are investigating the source of a loud explosion at Smuggler Mine on Saturday morning.