Prescribed burns to start on Idaho Panhandle National Forests

Favorable conditions are forecasted in the coming weeks to provide prescribed burning opportunities across the Idaho Panhandle National Forests.

Multiple prescribed burning projects are planned this spring, although the exact day of ignitions will depend upon conditions aligning with safe implementation. Prescribed burning is part of each Ranger District’s annual natural resource management program to reduce hazardous fuels, prepare areas for tree planting, and improve wildlife forage.

Fire managers will evaluate weather and fuels to determine when burning can be safely conducted. Burned areas are monitored to ensure that fire remains within the project boundaries.

The Idaho Panhandle National Forests works with the Montana/Idaho Airshed Group and the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to minimize smoke impacts from prescribed burning. All prescribed burning decisions are based on the Group’s recommendations given predicted smoke emissions and dispersion forecasts.

For additional information on air quality, smoke management and forecasts, click here.

The public is urged to stay away from project areas during burning operations and for a few days afterward. Signs will be posted along access roads and near affected trailheads and trail junctions during operations. Temporary access restrictions or closures may be necessary for public safety.

The exact timing and acreage of burns depend on fuel conditions and wind patterns and we will be updating information to the public as the season progresses. Project ignition status, maps, and information are available here.