DNR Planning Prescribed Burn on 240 Acres in Stevens County
April 12, 2023
A prescribed fire operation to reduce wildfire risk and restore forest health near Deer Park may begin as soon as Thursday, April 13
The Washington State Department of Natural Resources is planning a prescribed fire operation this spring on 240 acres of state trust land located about seven miles north of Deer Park. Click here to view the location on a map.
Department of Natural Resources (DNR) staff is preparing to begin operations as soon as Thursday, April 13. DNR is committed to conducting all prescribed fires as safely and effectively as possible, which may require postponing a burn on short notice. Members of the public can stay up to date on DNR prescribed fire information by visiting dnr.wa.gov/prescribedfire, following @wadnr_forests on Twitter, and by signing up for email alerts about upcoming burns.
Prescribed fires are a common tool used by land managers and conservation groups to reduce the amount of fuel available for wildfires, improve the health of older trees, support new and current wildlife habitats, and recycle soil nutrients back into the ground.
Successful completion of a prescribed fire operation enhances public safety by providing wildland firefighters a safer landscape on which to fight a wildfire. It can also lessen the amount of smoke caused by wildfires due to the reduction of fuels.
A recent study completed by DNR scientists found that forest health treatments that included prescribed fire in addition to mechanical thinning of tree stands were more likely to be effective when impacted by a wildfire.
Smoke Management and Closure Information
The smoke impacts from prescribed fire are minimal and short-lived compared to those caused by wildfire. Burn crews carefully monitor conditions to limit the effects of smoke on nearby residents.
Persons and businesses with increased sensitivity to smoke should be prepared to follow the same precautions they would for wildfire smoke. These include limiting physical activity outdoors, closing the fresh-air intake on air circulation systems, and creating a box fan filter. Additional information can be found at the Washington State Department of Health website.
The burn unit includes Boggs Pit, a popular location for recreational shooting. Investigators determined that four wildfires originated from this site during the 2021 fire season. There are approximately 60 structure clusters within one mile of the shooting pit, many of which include residences. DNR will close Boggs Pit for duration of the burn.
Smoke impacts may reduce visibility on nearby roads, including Sherman Road and Horseshoe Lake Road. Smoke may be visible from U.S. Route 2 and U.S. Route 395.
Outdoor recreationists and hunters are encouraged to check closure information frequently to ensure the areas they plan to visit are open. All burn areas will have signs posted in advance.
About the Washington State Department of Natural Resources
Administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, DNR manages more than 5.6 million acres of state-owned forest, range, commercial, agricultural, conservation, and aquatic lands. Of these, more than half are held in trust to produce income to support public schools and other essential services. State trust lands managed by DNR provide other public benefits, including outdoor recreation, habitat for native fish and wildlife, and watersheds for clean water.