On September 20, the Waldo Canyon Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team completed its aerial mulching emergency stabilization treatments.
Contractor Bradco Environmental worked with the Pike National Forest's BAER implementation team to aerially treat 3,038 acres with AgStraw and Woodshred mulch with helicopters. To-date, 3,038 acres have been treated by the contractor and over 8,000 tons of mulch was dispersed. BAER Team Leader Cathy Carlock anticipates that the contractor will finish its efforts to rehabilitate and seed the mulch staging and work areas within the next few days. The Pikes Peak Ranger District and the BAER Team thanks the community for their patience during the aerial mulching activities.
Additional BAER stabilization treatments that have been completed are:
• Installed 50 "Flash Flood" warning signs along Forest Service trails and recreation areas.
• Installed 2 gates along Rampart Range Road for continued closure access to the burn area: One gate installed on the westside of the burn area and one gate installed on the eastside of Rampart Range Road (above Garden of the Gods area).
• Continued burn area closure for safety and protection measures.
• Removed hazard trees along the trails and within the recreation sites, stabilized 8 miles of trails, and removed hazardous debris on national forest system lands within the fire perimeter area.
• Removed hazard trees along Forest Service roadsides within the burn area.
BAER treatments that the Forest Service is planning to complete:
• Storm-proof 16 miles of Forest Service roads within the burn area, starting on October 1.
• Implement invasive weed detection surveys and apply an herbicide treatment as appropriate.
On-Going BAER treatments:
• Storm patrol along Forest Service roads and trails within the burn area, after rain events.
• Effective treatment monitoring over the next few years to measure the effectiveness of all of the Waldo Canyon BAER emergency treatments.
The Pike National Forest reminds the public that all trails and the entire fire perimeter continue to be closed to the public for its safety and the recovery of the natural resources.
The BAER implementation team coordinated their emergency stabilization treatments with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Colorado Department of Transportation, El Paso County, and the City of Colorado Springs along with other state and local agencies responsible for flood control and assistance to landowners downstream of burned area federal lands (http://www.co.nrcs.usda.gov/news/pas/2012_Fires/2012_Fires.html).
NRCS is also working cooperatively with the El Paso County Department of Public Works (DPW) and cities and communities adjacent to and downstream from the Waldo Canyon Fire burned area to evaluate potential threats to specific businesses, homes, and neighborhoods.
Federal assistance to private landowners is the primary responsibility of the NRCS through the Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) program (http://www.co.nrcs.usda.gov/news/pas/2012_Fires/2012_Fires_EWP_Assistance.html).
For Waldo Canyon BAER information, contact Public Affairs Officer Barb Timock at (719) 553-1415. Follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/PSICC_NF.
|Date of Origin||Saturday June 23rd, 2012 approx. 12:00 PM|
|Location||Pike National Forest, El Paso County|
|Incident Commander||Lisa Gowe|
|Estimated Containment Date||Tuesday July 10th, 2012 approx. 08:00 PM|
Brush, Mountain shrub, oak, grass, Pinon juniper, Ponderosa pine, Douglas fir, spruce, Limber pine
Significant potential for flooding and/or debris slides below/downstream of fire scar areas. Unburned islands of vegetation well within the contained fire will put up smoke on hot/dry afternoons - these areas are monitored and pose no threat.
Previous rain events produced light to heavy precipitation in fire area, but no recent significant rain.
Continue to support utility infra-structure repair and suppression repair. Monitor fire and smoke reports. Hot spots (heavy logs and duff) in the interior area have been lined and are periodically monitored. Fire monitoring recon flights conducted as needed based on weather. Trail recon for rehab needs.
None - Contained
Moderate to Extreme
Estimate cost as of July 17 : $ 16,686,000 Estimated costs of operational activities since July 17: $ 25,000 per day