Fire managers on the Verde Ranger District plan to burn 4,130 acres of the 132 Blacklining RX. Ignitions are planned to start on Monday October 23, 2023, through Sunday, November 5, 2023, pending favorable weather conditions. The burn unit is located on Mingus Mountain, east of Highway 89A (R15N, R2E, Sec21). Smoke will be visible from Prescott Valley, Dewey, Prescott, Cottonwood, Clarkdale, Camp Verde and the I-17 corridor. Expect large volume of smoke during day light hours and overnight smoke impacts in Prescott Valley, Dewey and surrounding low lying areas.
Recreationist can expect road delays on Forest Service Road (FSR) 132 from Kendall Peak south and east to Log Springs. Be advised that there will be fire activity and fire equipment working on FSR 132 and East Ash Creek Trail #539 for the duration of the burn. During the Man vs Horse race on Saturday, October 28, there will be no burning.
The project also furthers the goals of the Forest Service’s national Wildfire Crisis Strategy to restore forests so they are less vulnerable to extreme wildfires that can risk lives and property, impact watersheds and wildlife habitat. The Blacklining RX will reduce fuel loading on the south side on Mingus Mountain and create fuel breaks along FSR 132.
Fire managers will use this treatment in future fire operations as a defensible fire line to contain unwanted wildfires. Values to be protected include private inholdings on Mingus Mountain (the University of Arizona 4 H Camp, Brindle Pup Mine and Recreation Residence), communications sites on the top of Mingus Mountain, the communities of Cherry and Whitehorse and Forest Infrastructure in the Mingus Mountain Recreation Area. Ecological benefits include increasing vegetation diversity, improving wildlife habitat and reducing invasive plants.
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 prescribed fires are ignited on the Prescott National Forest:
· Facebook https://www.facebook.com/PrescottNF/
· Twitter https://twitter.com/PrescottNF
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.