With the turn of the season comes the change in focus from wildfires to prescribed fires on the Tahoe National Forest, according to a news release. In the coming weeks, fire managers plan to implement prescribed fire operations as conditions and resources permit. They’ll start with a pile burn southeast of Cascade Shores on Greenhorn Road and near the Buckeye Diggins. A total of 190 acres have hand piles ready to be burned.

A you can see on the map below, the extensive project is part of the Western Nevada County Community Defense Project, the Deer Creek portion. The Fuels Team is planning to burn piles in the Buckeye Diggins area today. Unit AAA for the remaining 19 acres, and if that goes well, they’ll be moving over Unit QQQ for another 20 acres. There are 172 acres remaining in Unit QQQ, and the Fuels team plans to keep taking small bites daily as burning conditions and weather allows.

The American River Ranger District Fuels team is taking advantage of early snow cover and are currently firing piles in the French Meadows pile burn plan today before more snow makes burning difficult. The current light snow cover has left the piles dry enough to burn and stop spread.

French Meadows burn piles on Oct. 20, 2021
French Meadows burn piles on Oct. 20, 2021

All prescribed fire projects are conducted in accordance with a specific, approved prescribed fire plan. These plans describe the specific conditions under which the prescribed burns will be conducted, including the weather, number of personnel, and ways to minimize smoke impacts. Fire is a natural part of the Sierra ecosystem. The prescribed fire program is very important for the land, the public, and firefighters. A little smoke now could prevent a lot of smoke later.

There is no need to report the smoke as firefighters are staffing all the prescribed burns.