The Parks and Open Space Department has begun a fire mitigation project at Walker Ranch Open Space.
The project area was identified for fire mitigation forestry treatments during the Walker Ranch Management Plan update in 2013. The four phases of this project will link forest treatments along private and county open space lands, decrease potential fire intensity and create opportunities for fire suppression.
Phase one is 25 acres in the Meyers Gulch area of the open space. Ladder fuels and tree density will be reduced through removing small (2-12” diameter at 4.5’) ponderosa pine infested with dwarf mistletoe, and Douglas-fir trees. This will reduce the amount of available fuel in the event of a fire and raise thresholds for extreme fire behavior.
The Boulder County Sheriff’s Office Fire Management staff will use chainsaws to cut trees. This work will occur during daylight hours, including weekends. Wood generated from this project will be removed from the forest and be made available through public firewood sales. The Boulder County Youth Corps will pile the slash from this project to be burned during winter months.
Fuel: any living or dead material that will burn
Ladder Fuels: plants and other living and dead materials that provide a path between fuels on the ground to the branches and crowns of trees, sometimes resulting in high-intensity crown fires