SANTA FE—Fire managers at Santa Fe National Forest are planning to conduct a prescribed burn in the Gallinas Watershed on the Pecos/Las Vegas Ranger District.
The Gallinas Watershed burn may be conducted from Nov. 12, through the month of December only on favorable days as conditions allow.
A total of 1,000 acres may be treated in the Gallinas Canyon area approximately 20 miles northwest of Las Vegas. Small blocks may be treated each day to decrease the daily smoke volume.
Prescribed fires are one of the most effective tools available to resource managers for restoring fire-dependent ecosystems. These fires mimic natural fires by reducing forest fuels, recycling nutrients and increasing habitat diversity. Each prescribed burn is designed to meet specific objectives.
The Gallinas Watershed prescribed burn is designed to remove dead forest fuels, provide community protection and promote forest health. Prescribed fires are managed with firefighter and public safety as the first priority.
Smoke from the Gallinas Watershed prescribed burn will be monitored to ensure that New Mexico Environment Department’s Air Quality Bureau regulations are being met. It will likely be visible from the communities of Gallinas, El Porvenir, San Pablo, Mineral Hill, San Geronimo and Gascon. Smoke may also impact Hwy. 65, the main access to the Gallinas Canyon corridor, and Hermit’s Peak. Smoke may also be visible from Las Vegas.
Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory problems are encouraged to take precautionary measures. Information on air quality and protecting your health can be found online at the New Mexico Environment Department’s website at https://nmtracking.org/fire.