BLM plans Eagle Lake prescribed burn

Fire crews from the Bureau of Land Management Eagle Lake Field Office will conduct prescribed burns to reduce hazardous fuels in north of Eagle Lake in Lassen County, beginning in mid-October. Projects will occur only when weather and fuel conditions allow for safe and successful burning, according to a statement from the BLM. Timing of these projects will depend upon weather and available staff and equipment.

BLM fire crews will be burning near Eagle Lake. File photo

The Bald Understory Project, a series of broadcast burns, is scheduled to begin the week Oct. 16. The first phase will be a carefully managed broadcast burn of 150 to 300 acres on BLM managed public lands just west of the Grasshopper area along State Route 139. Smoke will be visible from the vicinity of Eagle Lake and to motorists along the Highway 139 and Highway 395.

“The prescribed burns in this project will help reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire associated with high fuel loading,” said Emily Ryan, manager of the BLM Eagle Lake Field Office in Susanville. “They will improve firefighter safety and effectiveness in the event of a wildfire. These burns will also help prevent wildfire damages to natural resources and help protect communities within the Wildland Urban Interface, where homes are near public lands. The project will also improve wildlife habitat and livestock grazing conditions.”

The Bald Understory Project will consist of a series of burns in a 4,000-acre project area. Crews will complete a series of small, strategically located burns ahead of larger broadcast burns designed to treat the entire project area, explained Eagle Lake Field Office Fire Management Officer Grant Gifford.

The BLM conducts prescribed burns conforming to plans that specify allowable weather and fuel conditions, and the personnel and equipment required.