CAÑON CITY, Colo. — Fire managers of the San Isabel National Forest plan to ignite a prescribed fire on the Black Mountain Project. The 3,500-acre burn will take place in mid-October over several days.

The prescribed fire for Black Mountain is planned for an area located approximately ten miles north of Gardner. The San Carlos Ranger District (SCRD) fire managers hope the prescribed burn will achieve various objectives including:

  • Removal of hazardous fuels
  • Reducing risk for firefighters during future area wildfires
  • Increasing protection for communities from catastrophic wildfires
  • Improving wildlife habitat
  • Creating healthier and more resilient forest and watershed ecosystems

SCRD will monitor smoke levels from prescribed burns within restricted limits set by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE). Those who are sensitive to smoke or have respiratory problems are encouraged by SCRD to take precautionary measures.

“Prescribed fire is an effective tool for managing ponderosa pine and dry mixed-conifer forests, such as the one found in the Black Mountain area,” said San Carlos District Ranger Destiny Chapman. “Carefully ignited prescribed burns allow low-intensity fire to play its natural role in this traditionally frequent-fire ecosystem.”

SCRD officials will be hosting an informational meeting at the Raymond Aguirre Community Center in Gardner on Oct. 1 from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. for residents to learn more.