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San Juan NF Prescribed Fire Program

Unit Information

San Juan National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
15 Burnett Court
Durango, CO 81301

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Incident Contacts

Lorena Williams
Email: lorena.williams@usda.gov
Phone: 970-422-2939

Columbine RD Noah Daniels
Email: noah.daniels@usda.gov
Phone: 970-884-1430

Pagosa RD Fred Ellis
Email: fred.ellis@usda.gov
Phone: 970-264-1541

Dolores RD Dan Kaufenberg
Email: daniel.kaufenberg@usda.gov
Phone: 970-882-6844

San Juan NF to conduct pile burning this fall and winter

San Juan NF Prescribed Fire Program Prescribed Fire
News – 10/6/2021

Durango, Colo., October 6, 2021— The San Juan National Forest plans to burn slash piles this fall and winter generated from forest thinning and timber sales. Forest thinning projects improve forest health and wildlife habitat and reduce the risk of wildfire near private residences and other infrastructure. Thinning slash is piled and burned to remove the debris that would fuel wildfire. 


Pile burning will begin as early as this month when there is sufficient snow or rain present to prevent fire spread and will continue as long as conditions allow, possibly through April. Firefighters will ignite and monitor pile burning activities. These activities should not affect public access or use of the forest.   The Columbine Ranger District plans to burn slash piles in areas east of Bayfield in Arborgas Flats near Beaver Creek and in Saul’s Creek near Forest Service Road 608. Smoke may be visible from Bayfield, Pagosa Springs, and the U.S. Route 160 corridor.   The Pagosa Ranger District plans to burn slash piles near the following locations northwest of Pagosa Springs: Newt Jack Road (Forest Service Road 923), Four Mile Road (Forest Service Road 645 and 645.K), Buckles Lake Road (Forest Service Road 663), Plumtaw Road (Forest Service Road 634), and Black Mountain Road (Forest Service Road 661). Smoke may be visible from Pagosa Springs and U.S. Route 160.

The Dolores Ranger District plans to burn slash piles in areas north of Mancos, east and northeast of Dolores, and east of Dove Creek. Slash piles will be burned in the Chicken Creek area near Forest Service Roads 385 and 559 near the Joe Moore Reservoir; in the Haycamp Mesa area near Forest Service Roads 556 and 492, south of Beef Pasture Reservoir; in the Burnt Ridge area near Forest Service Road 566, north of Jackson Gulch Reservoir; in the Stoner Mesa area near Forest Service Road 686, southeast of the Willow Divide trailhead; and in the Lake Canyon area near Forest Service Roads 506 and 216 near Cow Canyon.  Smoke may be visible from State Highway 184, State Highway 145, Montezuma County Road 38, and U.S. Route 491.   Burning will only occur when all conditions of the state-issued smoke permit are met. Learn how smoke from wildfires, prescribed burns and pile burns may affect your health by visiting the Colorado Department of Public Health website https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdphe/wood-smoke-and-health

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