By Jake Lee Green
Kern Valley Sun
Winter time Hazardous Fuels Reductions projects are being scheduled on three mountaintops within the Kern River Ranger District on various tracts of land within the Sequoia National Forest. When weather and moisture conditions are within the definition of United States Forest Service parameters, prescribed fires will be conducted in affiliation with the Eastern Kern and San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control Districts. Fire managers will work closely with the two districts to manage the smoke production impacts of the fuels reduction projects as early as this week.
The Breckenridge project, located along Road #28S62, is south of the Breckenridge sub-division and consist of slash piles.
Adjacent to the community of Alta Sierra, south of Shirley Meadow, is the Greenhorn Mountain project.
The Kern Plateau project, which is near Blackrock Station, consists of 30 to 50 piles of burnable fuels.
It is with hopes that the prescribed burns will help to diminish the possibility of wildfires and help enable conifer forest and other associated wildlife habitat to be less vulnerable and safer for firefighters in case of a catastrophic wildfire.
Local communities and patrons of recreational national forest sites may be impacted by visible smoke in the areas of Isabella Lake, as well as the California Hot Springs and Glennville. Burning will be visible to those traveling across Sherman Pass Vista and into Kennedy Meadows during the Kern Plateau burn.
Temporary “as needed for public safety” closures on the Unal Trail, located on the Greenhorn Summit, may be issued.
Please refer to inciweb.nwcg.gov or contact John Lange, District Fuels Management Officer, at (760) 376-3781, ext. 656, for further information on the burns.