Fire Restrictions in Effect
Due to recent hot, dry, and windy conditions, the park is currently at very high fire danger. The following fire restrictions are in effect: No open fires are permitted anywhere within the park. Smoking is only permitted inside an enclosed vehicle. More »
Mesa Verde to Conduct Prescribed Fire in April
Contact: Betty Lieurance, 970-529-4608
Contact: Steve Underwood, 970-529-5049
Mesa Verde National Park is planning to implement a prescribed fire during the weeks of April 6th through the 20th, weather permitting. The Bobcat Canyon Restoration Prescribed Fire is being conducted to reduce the wildland fire hazard and promote regeneration within a stand of ponderosa pine at the south end of Wetherill Mesa.
The prescribed burn is 10 acres in size and is primarily comprised of ponderosa pine, gamble oak, piñon and juniper. This fire is part of an effort to protect one of the last remaining stands of ponderosa pine within the park. Most other stands of ponderosa have experienced high mortality rates due to the recent drought in combination with the large, intense fires over the past 15 years.
Burning at this time of year should produce low intensity fire behavior while still achieving desired fuel reduction goals. Ignition operations should take one to two days, but the unit may produce smoke for several days afterwards. Visitors to Mesa Verde may see smoke in the southwestern part of the park during these activities.
For more information contact Steve Underwood, Mesa Verde Fire Management Officer, at (970) 529-5049.
Did You Know?
On a snowy December day in 1888, while ranchers Richard Wetherill and Charlie Mason searched Mesa Verde’s canyons for stray cattle, they unexpectedly came upon Cliff Palace for the first time. The following year, the Wetherill brothers and Mason explored an additional 182 cliff dwellings.