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Spring burning planned for 3,300-plus acres



Within Idaho County, approximately 3,310 acres on the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests will be treated through prescribed burns starting this spring.

Comments sought on Johnson Bar Fire Salvage DEIS

Public comment is sought on proposals for salvage harvest of dead timber burned last summer on the Johnson Bar Fire.

The Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests have released a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) that analyzes three action alternatives that would utilize commercial timber harvest to treat between approximately 2,300 and 2,900 acres; construct between 0.7 and 4.0 miles of temporary road and decommission approximately 22 miles of closed and un-need roads within the 26,000-acre project area.

Starting last Aug. 3, 2014, the lightning-caused Johnson Bar Fire burned approximately 13,000 acres, 20 miles southeast of Kooskia across the Selway River on the Moose Creek Ranger District.

Comments regarding the DEIS proposal are due within 45 days of the publication of the Notice of Availability in the Federal Register, which was April 3.

The DEIS is available by contacting interdisciplinary team leader Mike Ward at 926-6413 or online:

http://data.ecosystem-management.org/

nepaweb/nepa_project_exp.php?project=45214 .

For information: Joe Hudson, district ranger, 926-8930; Laura Smith, public affairs specialist, 983-5143.

Districts and their projects are as follows:

Red River Ranger District: Prescribed burning will occur in areas associated with timber harvests and logging slash to reduce residual fuel loadings created as a result of the commercial harvest operations. These burns are set at the following: Looney 2 Timber Sale (six miles southeast of Elk City), 20 acres; 66 Timber Sale (Red River Meadows; 5.5 miles south southeast of Elk City), 136 acres; and Blanco Timber Sale (Blanco Road System; eight miles southeast of Elk City), 100 acres.

Information: Josh Bransford or Tom McLeod, 842-2245.

Salmon River Ranger District: Plans are to prescribe burn up to 2,500 acres near McComas Meadows and Quartz Ridge areas to reduce natural fuel loadings and create higher quality and greater quantity of grass, forbe and brush browse for animals. Some road and trail systems in the vicinity of these projects may be temporarily closed during operations. Also planned is to broadcast burn approximately 220 acres in the Buckshot Timber Sale and Black Sheep Salvage Sale areas.

Information: Josh Warden or Tim Theisen, 839-2211.

Lochsa Ranger District: Plans are to broadcast burn up to 229 acres north of Syringa and Lowell in the Bridge Creek-Big Hill areas to reduce hazardous fuels within the Wildland-Urban Interface and improve forest health. Also planned is burning up to 98 acres in the Higgins Hump and Big Hill areas to reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire and to create plantable spots for regeneration activities.

Information: Sean Gaines or Neal Cox, 926-4274.

Moose Creek Ranger District: Plans are to burn approximately seven acres of slash piles, associated with the Johnson Bar Fire, and to “blackline” the upper portions of the Fenn Face Prescribed burn project. This project is approximately 2,400 acres and is located directly adjacent to Fenn Ranger Station and private land in the Selway drainage. The proposed blacklining operation would consist of 100-200 acres.

Information: Tim Schaeffer or Chris Boldman, 926-4258.



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