Fire managers on the Verde Ranger District plan to burn 1,966 acres of the Marlow West RX. Ignitions are planned to start on Wednesday, March 8, 2023, and continue through Sunday, March 12, 2023, pending favorable weather conditions. The burn unit is located near Dugas, east of Interstate 17 and north of Cordes Junction; next to Forest Service Road 68E and Horner Mt. Ranch (T12N, R4E, Sec 27). This project is part of the Aqua Fria Grassland Restoration where fire crews plan to treat a large surface area with broadcast burning, improving wildlife habitat and the resiliency of forest ecosystems. A portion of the Cottonwood Trail #9709 is within the planned ignition area and fire managers ask the public to avoid Cottonwood Trail the remainder of this week. Fire personnel will continue to monitor, patrol and mop-up for several days after ignitions are complete. Smoke production will be light and will remain visible from several locations including Cottonwood, Camp Verde, Sedona, Prescott, Prescott Valley, Dewey-Humboldt, and Cordes Junction; and should dissipate quickly once ignitions are complete.
Ignitions will depend upon agency administrator approval and conditions within the ranges outlined in burn plans. Burn plans consider temperature, humidity, wind, moisture of the vegetation and conditions for dispersal of smoke.
Prescribed fires are utilized to remove hazardous fuels and return nutrients to the soils when seasonal weather opportunities allow for the use of fire safely and effectively and to restore and improve habitat for pronghorn and other wildlife species. Reducing hazardous fuels will help reduce the threat of high-severity, high-intensity wildfire to the public, adjacent private property, and communities.
In the interest of safety, forest visitors are reminded to obey all traffic signs and use caution when traveling in the vicinity of the prescribed burn as firefighters and fire-related traffic will be in the area.
Prescott National Forest’s land management strategy is centered on long-term forest health and the strategy includes reducing forest fuels and using prescribed fire on the landscape. Using low to moderate fire behavior, we can better protect communities, while improving watersheds, wildlife habitat, and forest health.
All prescribed fire activity is dependent on the availability of personnel and equipment, weather, fuels and conditions that minimize smoke impacts as much as possible, and approval from the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (www.azdeq.gov).
Messages will be posted on social media when managed fires are ignited on the Prescott National Forest:
For fire information please call (928) 925-1111; or stay up to date on Prescott National Forest news by checking the Prescott NF website and following us on Facebook and Twitter.