The Flathead National Forest is planning to conduct spring prescribed fire projects, when weather, fuel conditions, and air quality become favorable. Smoke will be visible from various places in the Flathead Valley depending on the location of the burn units and weather conditions.
Each project follows a Prescribed Fire Burn Plan. The prescribed fire projects are located and designed to be controlled to reduce the potential for adverse effects, or to escape as a wildland fire. These projects will be in compliance with Montana air quality standards and coordinated with Montana State Department of Environmental Quality to reduce the impacts of smoke to our neighbors, cooperators, and surrounding communities. The project areas include:
Swan Lake Ranger District:
Wild Cramer and Huey Timber Sale – This project includes broadcast in natural stands and timber harvest units in units located within the Blacktail Mountain area West of Lakeside. These treatments will use prescribed fire for fuels reduction, vegetation regeneration, and wildlife habitat improvement.
Swan Valley Bottom Maintenance Burning – This project includes maintenance broadcast burning in previously treated timber harvest units located within the Swan Valley. Specific locations include the Lion Creek Drainage, Condon Airstrip area, and Holland Lake area. These treatments will use prescribed fire for fuels reduction, large ungulate winter range improvement, and improve forest health.
Pile Burning – Hand or Machine piles are located in several locations within the Swan Valley and Bigfork Community and miscellaneous piles around the district as a result of but not limited to: logging, hazardous fuels reduction in the wildland urban interface, hazard tree removal, recreation site management, and trail or road construction. These piles are burned to reduce the fuel loads in these areas. These piles are strategically burned based on their location, access, and weather conditions.
Tally Lake Ranger District:
Beaver Lake North 30 – 34 acre natural fuels understory burn to reduce fuel in the Wildland Urban Interface and improve big game habitat approximately 4 miles west of Whitefish.
Logan Creek 200 – 180 acre natural fuels understory burn to reduce fuel in the Wildland Urban Interface and improve big game habitat North end of Tally Lake.
Hungry Horse District:
Ninko Cabin Fuels Reduction—this burn targets 3 acres of hand piles associated with fuels reduction adjacent to Ninko cabin along Whale creek road north of Polebridge.
Big Creek Administration Site—this burn project targets 3 acres of hand piles adjacent to the Big Creek learning center facility north of Columbia Falls.
Firefighter Project—this burn includes 75 acres of site prep. in 4 units associated with logging activities on Firefighter Mountain along the east side of Hungry Horse reservoir.
Hungry Horse Ranger Station— this burn project targets hand piles near the town of Hungry Horse along the lower dam road and south of the ranger station. In addition, 5 acres of grass and shrubs on the HH/GV administrative site is targeted for prescribed fire.
Coram Pasture Rx—Proposal to burn 20 acres of the Coram pasture administrative site to reduce encroachment of woody vegetation and enhance forage for the livestock. This burn is located between Martin City and Coram.
For more information about these projects, contact the appropriate Ranger Station:
Hungry Horse/Glacier View Ranger District: 406/387-3800
Tally Lake Ranger District: 406/758-5204
Swan Lake Ranger District: 406/837-7500
For precise prescribed fire ignition dates and times, follow our Facebook and Twitter profiles at
https://www.facebook.com/discovertheflathead and https://twitter.com/FlatheadNF. General forest information can be found online at http://www.fs.usda.gov/flathead.