Pile burns planned at Mesa Verde National Park

Keywords: Mancos Times,

Mesa Verde National Park fire management staff plans to implement a pile burn this month in the park.

The burn will take place on Chapin Mesa with one large pile near the four-way intersection in the vicinity of park headquarters to consume material from fuel-reduction projects.

The pile consists of branches and brush generated from maintaining defensible space around park buildings during the past summer. Fire crews removed encroaching vegetation in order to aid in the management of wildland fires and help the structural fire crew in its efforts to protect park buildings. The project followed guidelines of the National Fire Protection Association's "Firewise Communities" program, and was developed and funded through the Wildland Urban Interface Initiative in cooperation with the National Fire Plan.

Protection of structures is a very important aspect of fire management at Mesa Verde. It is estimated that it will take one or two days to complete ignition and cleanup operations.

Smoke impact for the project is expected to be minimal. However, visitors may encounter smoke on the roadway during the burn and are encouraged to drive carefully and watch for fire personnel, vehicles and warning signs in the vicinity of the project.

Information: Call Steve Underwood, fire management officer, at (970) 529-5049.