Prescribed fire on Big Mountain Monday
The prescribed burn near Whitefish Mountain Resort in fall 2021. (Provided photo)
The Tally Lake Ranger District is planning to prescribe burn an area directly adjacent to Whitefish Mountain Resort on Monday. The actual implementation of this burn will be dependent on many factors including current and expected weather, fuel moisture and smoke dispersion. The smoke from this burn will be highly visible from Whitefish and around the Flathead Valley.
Units to the east of Whitefish Mountain Resort were approved in the Whitefish Municipal Watershed Fuel Reduction Project in 2017. The purpose of these burns is to protect the municipal watershed by introducing prescribed fire that would reduce the chance for high-intensity wildfire in the future. In addition to these protections, this burn would increase resilience to insects and disease, improve wildlife species' habitat and aid in the restoration of whitebark pine.
This controlled burn will utilize a helicopter equipped with a helitorch, a device that drops fire into the area to be burned, to accomplish ignition. Firefighters will be on scene and in surrounding areas to aid in implementation.
A temporary closure order will be in effect surrounding the burn (see map for closure area).
Fire managers are hoping to accomplish approximately 285 acres of burning approved in the Whitefish Municipal Watershed Fuels Reduction Project. A total of 850 acres were approved in this project with roughly 187 being successfully completed last year.
For updated information visit the Forest’s social media sites at https://www.facebook.com/discovertheflathead and https://twitter.com/FlatheadNF. General Forest information can be found online at http://www.fs.usda.gov/flathead.