National Forest: Burns near Hart Prairie, Apache Maid Mountain scheduled this week | Local
Chris Brooks (left) and Keith Halloran (right) observe the smoke pattern from a fire pile that was lit in a controlled fire on the edge of Highway 180 Tuesday morning.
Jake Bacon, Arizona Daily sun
Daily sun staff
The firefighters of the Coconino National Forest plan to take advantage of the favorable weather conditions this week. Multiple burns are planned in the Flagstaff area and there is a large fire treatment project in the Red Rock Ranger District.
The Apache Maid cremation is slated to begin Tuesday and last for much of the week. Firefighters will burn an 1190 acre area about 11 miles southeast of Sedona near Apache Maid Mountain on the east side of Interstate 17.
The effort is a burn of broadcast maintenance to reduce the accumulated fuel sources and recycle these nutrients into the environment.
Smoke will be noticed by motorists along I-17 near the Stoneman Lake exit and should move northeast during the day, affecting Stoneman Lake Road and the small community of Stoneman Lake. During the evenings, smoke can easily hit the Rim Rock and Camp Verde communities overnight as it drains the canyons.
Closer to Flagstaff, the fire managers will also perform burns on 13 acres of Hart Prairie, just off 151 Forest Road. These operations started on Monday and will continue through Tuesday.
If southwest winds are expected, smoke is predicted to move northeast. In the evenings, cooling temperatures can cause smoke to settle in the lower-lying areas around the combustion and be visible to those in the Flagstaff, I-17, I-40, and US Highways 180 and 89 areas.