Fall burns planned in Sequoia, Kings Canyon


UPDATE – Monday, Oct. 10: Following a successful test burn this morning and a determination by the burn boss and fire management staff, the Dorst Prescribed Burn has started in Sequoia National Park. Ignitions will continue for two to three days. –National Park Service press release


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The Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Fire Management Program has a list of several prescribed burns they would like to accomplish this fall. The headliner and the first to be ignited will be in the vicinity of Dorst Creek Campground, which is currently closed for the season. 

No specific date has been set for the Dorst Prescribed Burn, which will encompass 187 acres in northern Sequoia National Park. But when lit, over the course of three days of ignitions, smoke will waft down into Three Rivers during the nighttime hours via the Kaweah River’s North Fork canyon.

In the Dorst Creek area, smoke will also be present and could impact visibility on the nearby Generals Highway. Drivers should expect delays or short-term closures due to the smoke and should watch for firefighters and fire activity in the area.

 This fire will most likely be lit as soon as park fire managers, in conjunction with the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District, determine environmental conditions, including weather and fuel moisture, are favorable.

Also on the docket for Fall 2016 are three additional projects: 

Deadwood Prescribed Burn— This project will encompass 278 acres near Atwell Mill Campground in the Mineral King area of Sequoia National Park. If ignited, it will be after the Mineral King Road is closed for the winter (October 26). This burn could have smoke impacts on Three Rivers.

Sequoia Creek Prescribed Burn— This 264-acre burn will be between the Big Stump entrance to Kings Canyon National Park and the Wilsonia Historic District. Fifty-five acres will be on Sequoia National Forest land.

Cedar East Prescribed Burn— Located along Highway 180 in the Cedar Grove area of Kings Canyon, if and when this 584-acre burn is ignited, it will occur after the road to Cedar Grove has been closed for the season.

Travelers to any area that has fire activity should expect trail closures to be in effect.

Prescribed fire is the most practical way to reduce dangerous accumulations of combustible fuels in a forest. Wildfires that burn into areas where fuels have been reduced by prescribed burning cause less damage and are much easier to control.

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