Fire Stories

Fire stories from the national parks highlight events, incidents, and the like, associated with fire and fuels management, as well as fire education, technology, partnerships, and more. Stories highlight work related to Department of the Interior initiatives as well as local and regional initiatives.

Reducing Risk and Supporting Community Fuels Projects

Whiskeytown National Recreation Area, California

The National Park Service at Whiskeytown National Recreation Area joined forces with the Western Shasta Resource Conservation District and received a $79,000 National Fire Plan grant to construct a shaded fuelbreak along Rock Creek Road in the town of Old Shasta which borders Whiskeytown National Recreation Area.

Wildfire has played a natural part in the evolution of vegetation of the 30,400 acre Shasta West watershed in northern California. With increased urbanization, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Prevention consider this area as having high to very high fire danger. Several fires have occurred in the last 25 years, however, a large percentage of the watershed has not burned in the last 60 years and local officials are very concerned with the level of fuel accumulation and the dramatic increase in residents. The area is also characterized by poor road access for firefighters and equipment.

The shaded fuelbreak, which was completed during summer 2006, has helped reduce some of the fire and access risk. The project area is approximately 38 acres and is 2.5 miles long. The fuelbreak is about 50 feet wide along both sides of Rock Creek Road.

It was a multiple landowner project, including private property as well as BLM public land. Crews from the Western Shasta Resource Conservation District performed the work, thinning brush and ladder fuels and removing trees and brush eight inches and less in diameter. The material was chipped and scattered over the area. The area now has an attractive park-like appearance, but more importantly defensible space has improved as well as traffic access in the event of a wildfire.

Working together with our partners makes good sense to protect communities and neighbors.

Contact: Carol Jandrall, Fire Communications and Education Specialist
Phone: (530) 359-2304