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.

Joint Information Call Center in action.

Project burn entry as seen from Swasey Drive in west Redding, CA. Residential developments extend to the top of the ridge in the background.

East Boundary Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) Prescribed Fire Project

Whiskeytown National Recreation Area, California
Cohesive Strategy—Fire-Adapted Human Communities, Response to Wildfire*

Beginning on October 4th, 2011, the NPS Whiskeytown National Recreation Area (NRA) resumed fall prescribed under-burn treatments within the East Boundary Project on the Shasta Divide Ridge at the eastern boundary of the park. The primary goals of the project are to reduce hazardous fuel build up to help protect neighboring communities at risk and create modified fuel profiles from which safe and effective fire management activities can be initiated. A concurrent goal of the project is to reintroduce fire on the landscape to help restore greater fire resiliency and promote long-term resource health and protection within the park.

Neighborhood with smoke in background.

Photo of planned smoke transport away from developed areas. Picture taken from northwest Redding, CA neighborhood looking southwest toward Whiskeytown NRA.

The project area is immediately adjacent to the historic community of Old Shasta, Californina. and the Swasey Drive residential area of west Redding, California. The Shasta Divide Ridge forms the primary topographic feature separating local developed urban areas from a majority of the Whiskeytown Lake NRA portion of the recreation area. It provides a strategic and logical location for fire management treatments and preplanned suppression activities due to proximity to communities and relative defensible position on the landscape. The project is divided into multiple sub-units ranging between 10 ?? 60 acres to help mitigate smoke impacts and facilitate the accomplishment of both management and operational objectives.

Due to the proximity to local community developments and the relative small size of the Whiskeytown NRA fire program, project implementation requires significant planning, coordination and cooperation with multiple federal, state and local entities on a consistent basis. Much of this includes the issuance of multiple media and public press releases, notifications to cooperators and local residents, coordination for use of cooperator resources and close cooperation with the Shasta County Air Resource Board to mitigate local air quality concerns.

To date, Whiskeytown Fire Management has accomplished six individual sub-unit project entries totaling 158 acres of treatments within the project area. The cumulative planned treatment area within the East Boundary Project consists of approximately 350 acres. Implementation of additional prescribed fire under burn treatments within project sub-units are planned as conditions and circumstances permit moving into 2012.

Contact: Tom Garcia, Fire Management Officer
: (530) 242-3443

*This story supports the Department of the Interior initiatives.