Horsethief Prescribed Burn Planned at Grand Canyon National Park

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Date: October 31, 2013
Contact: Kirby-Lynn Shedlowski, 928-638-7958
Contact: Daniel Pearson, 928-638-7934

Grand Canyon, AZ – Grand Canyon National Park fire managers plan to conduct a prescribed fire on the South Rim the week of November 4th

The Horsethief Prescribed Fire (Horesthief Rx) is located just west of Grand Canyon Village between Rowe Well Road and West Rim Drive. Fire managers anticipate initiating the Horsethief Rx on Wednesday, November 6th and expect to complete ignitions on Thursday, November 7th should conditions remain favorable. Ignitions are anticipated to last two days, with several days of residual smoke to follow. The primary treatment area consists of ponderosa pine stands surrounded by pinyon-juniper as well as grass and brush.

The Horsethief Burn Unit is approximately 5,437 acres. During this prescribed fire approximately 1,000 acres will be treated, including 400 acres previously treated in 1999. 

Prescribed fires play an important role in decreasing risks to life, resources, and property by reducing accumulations of forest fuels and maintaining the natural role of fire in a fire-dependent ecosystem. Like all prescribed fires, the plan for the Horsethief Rx contains a set of parameters that define (amongst other things) the wind speed and direction, humidity, temperature, dispersion, expected weather and fuel conditions under which the fire can be initiated. Prior to implementing the project, fire managers will evaluate current conditions and will only ignite the fire if the prescribed conditions are within those parameters.

Smoke impacts on West Rim Drive and along Rowe Well Road are expected.   In addition, smoke is likely to settle into the canyon at night, beginning to lift out with daytime heating by late morning. Coordination with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality is ongoing.

Visitors may see fire personnel, vehicles, and air support in the vicinity of the burn unit. Please drive slowly, turn your lights on, and avoid stopping in areas where fire personnel are working.

For updates on fire activity at Grand Canyon National Park, follow @GrandCanyonNPS on Twitter, or visit or For more information on plans for South Rim prescribed fires, please call South Rim District Fire Management Officer Dan Pearson at 928-638-7934. 




Last updated: February 24, 2015

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