Lost Grove Prescribed Burn— On or about Sunday, Oct. 15, Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Parks fire crews will ignite the 669-acre Lost Grove Prescribed Burn. The burn unit is located between Dorst Campground in Sequoia National Park and Stony Creek in Sequoia National Forest, almost entirely in designated wilderness that will be closed to the public during the fire.
It’s possible that smoke will find its way to Three Rivers in the nighttime hours during the ignition phase of the project, which will last four to seven days, depending on conditions. (Update: The Lost Grove burn was postponed due to smoky air quality.)
Northern California fires— Michael Theune, parks’ fire information officer, reported that Engine 71 with a National Park Service crew from the local parks is in Northern California assisting Cal Fire. In addition to smoke impacts from these North Bay fires — where 29 are confirmed dead, hundreds are missing, and 3,000 homes and businesses have burned — Three Rivers is receiving additional smoke from the Lion Fire, a 14,000-acre lightning-caused fire burning in the Golden Trout Wilderness near Lion Meadow, 10 air miles south of Farewell Gap.
Lion Fire— Due to its remote backcountry location, the Lion Fire is being managed as a resource burn by Sequoia National Forest. The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District has given permission for several thousand more acres of fire growth.
As of Thursday, Oct. 12, the Lion Fire was zero percent contained. Like most fires burning in the wilderness, the Lion Fire most likely will only be extinguished by a significant snow or rainstorm.
St. Anthony Retreat fire— On Thursday, Oct. 5, a fire started in an outbuilding on the grounds of St. Anthony Retreat Center in Three Rivers. The fire spread to some adjacent vegetation but was quickly extinguished by Tulare County Fire Department firefighters.
UPDATE / Cedar East Prescribed Burn— Following a successful test burn on the afternoon of Tuesday, Oct. 17, and a determination by the burn boss and fire management staff, the Cedar East Prescribed Burn has started in Kings Canyon National Park. Three to four days of ignitions are planned.
This final segment will complete the Cedar East Prescribed Burn, which was begun in Cedar Grove in April 2017. The segment is located east of the Road’s End Permit Station, and primarily south of the Kings River.
The purpose of this 192-acre prescribed burn is to reduce hazardous fuel loading and restore/maintain the natural fire cycle in the Cedar Grove. The historic fire return interval in this area is approximately once every three to ten years. In total, 553-acres will be treated.
Throughout the burn, the south side of the Kanawyer Loop will be closed. Trail escorts will be performed through the north side for visitors wishing to access or return from wilderness areas via Road’s End. All facilities such as campgrounds, lodges, and public areas remain on schedule for previously determined closing dates.
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks work with the San Joaquin Air Pollution Control District to coordinate and regulate smoke contributions to the airshed. For more information about air quality in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks visit go.nps.gov/sekiair. For regional information about air quality, visit www.valleyair.org.
For updates about the Cedar East Prescribed Burn visit https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5162/.