Pile burns likely in Rocky Mountain National Park | SkyHiNews.com

Pile burns likely in Rocky Mountain National Park

Sky-Hi News staff report

Rocky Mountain National Park officials said that conditions are favorable Thursday and Friday to burn piles on the eastern side of the park.

Fire management staff plans to burn piles in the Moraine Park Campground and Lily Lake area. Smoke may be visible from multiple locations on the east side of the park and flames will likely be visible from the Lily Lake and Highway 7 near Lily Lake.

Pile burning operations only begin when conditions allow, officials said. Safety factors, weather conditions, air quality and other environmental regulations are continually monitored.

Officials noted that, when fighting the East Troublesome Fire in 2020, firefighters were able to take advantage of previous and existing prescribed fire and hazardous fuels treatment areas that provided a buffer between the fire and Estes Park. Prior hazard fuels projects aided considerably in stopping the fire from jumping Bear Lake Road and Trail Ridge Road.

Years of hazardous fuels reduction projects and bark beetle tree removal on the west side were instrumental in the successful burnout operations around Grand Lake and helped minimize structure loss in the main park housing area, park officials added.

Piles of slash in the park are from several fuels reduction projects and hazard tree removals. Slash from these projects has been cut and piled by park fire crews and contractors over the last two years and are now dry enough to burn.

The projects are designed to reduce significant accumulations of forest fuels that can generate extreme or problematic fire behavior adjacent to wildland urban interface. By reducing the potential fire behavior the wildland fire risk to firefighters and the public is significantly reduced.

Prescribed fire smoke may affect your health. For more information see http://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdphe/wood-smoke-and-health.

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