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Saturday, October 1, 2011

Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park controlled Burns

A series of controlled burns planned to begin Saturday and Sunday in the Sierra foothill could result in an unpleasant weekend for people with asthma and other breathing problems.

The National Park Service will set two of the fires Saturday in Sequoia and Kings Canyon national parks, while CAL FIRE is planning a separate burn that day near Three Rivers.

And a fourth controlled burn of nearly 100 acres is scheduled to begin Sunday near Hume Lake, in the Sequoia National Forest.
Here are the controlled burns:

ª CAL FIRE crews are expected to start setting their controlled burns starting at 9 a.m. Saturday in the Grouse Creek drainage, about six miles southwest of Three Rivers.

They plan to burn about 1,600 acres of brush and grass oak woodlands in order to reduce fuel for wildfires that could threaten Three Rivers, as well as improving wildlife habitats and water drainage in the area.

ª On Sunday, National Forest Service crews will start a series of fires intended to burn 96 acres northwest of Hume Lake Christian Camp.

This latest fire is part of a series of controlled burns set in a mosaic pattern — leaving some areas burned and some untouched — to reduce fuel for wildfires and also prevent soil erosion.

ª The first phase of the planned "Huckleberry Prescribed Burn" in Sequoia National Park is excepted to burn 69 acres starting Saturday, with subsequent burns planned for 151 and 90 acres, the National Park Service reports.

Each burn is expected to last one to three days, depending on ground and weather conditions.

Those burns will occur east of Crescent Meadow Road, south of the Huckleberry Trail and west of Crescent Meadow.

ª The "Swale East Prescribed Fire" in Kings Canyon began with a prescribed burn of 26 acres Sept. 25. The next phase, beginning Saturday, is expected to burn 75 acres over a day or two, according to the Park Service.

That burn will occur west of Highway 180, east of the South Boundary Trail and south of Grant Tree Road.

Park Service fire crews will monitor both the Huckleberry and Swale East burns.

They will be set to help giant Sequoia trees reproduce.

Visitors and residents near those areas should expect smoke, particularly in the mornings and late evenings.

Borgioli said that on Monday, stronger winds blowing east should move smoke from any fires still burning over the Sierra, improving the air quality here.

And late Tuesday or early Wednesday, he said, "we should get rain in the foothills and Valley floor, which should be enough to put out any fires remaining."
California Fire News 2011 

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****REMINDER**** Every fire has the ability to be catastrophic. The wildland fire management environment has profoundly changed. Growing numbers of communities, across the nation, are experiencing longer fire seasons; more frequent, bigger, and more severe, fires are a real threat. Be careful with all campfires and equipment.
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