Gladstone, MI — The Forest Service is notifying the public of prescribed fires that may be conducted in the central upper peninsula in the near future. Current weather forecasts suggest suitable burning weather may occur in the next several days. Prescribed burning is very weather dependent but may occur Monday and Tuesday, May 13 and 14, 2019. If conditions are not appropriate, the burns will be postponed until more favorable conditions arise.
On Monday, May 13, 2019, the Forest Service’s Hiawatha National Forest fire personnel may conduct a 137-acre unit of the Mike White Prescribed Fire located 3 miles east of Forest Highway 13 about 8 miles north of Isabella. The purposes of this controlled burn are habitat maintenance, old growth maintenance and hazardous fuels reduction. The project location is T44 N/R18W/Section 19.
The 573-acre Dutch Mill Prescribed Fire, located 1/2-mile east of US 41 about 7 miles north of the US Hwy-41/US Hwy-2 intersection (near Rapid River), is planned for Tuesday. The purpose of the Dutch Mill Prescribed Fire is habitat maintenance and hazardous fuels reduction. The project location is T42N/R21W/Sections 8, 9, 16, and 17.
During active burning, smoke may be visible from Gladstone and other points throughout the area. Due to safety concerns, the fire will only be executed in wind conditions that minimize the likelihood of reduced visibility due to smoke on road. Though unlikely, smoke may settle in some areas in the evening hours. If you have health problems that may be aggravated by smoke production, please contact Cory Henry, Acting Zone Fire Management Officer, at 906-387-2512 x1018 and/or email HiawathaNF@fs.fed.us, and you will be personally notified prior to any burning activities.
These projects will improve the overall health and vigor of vegetation and wildlife habitat on the Forest. They also promote growth of blueberries and morels. Openings serve as natural firebreaks by keeping large accumulations of hazardous fuels away from private homes and property boundaries. Such openings can burn frequently, but are consistent in only carrying or sustaining low intensity wildfires. Firebreak areas help to minimize the spread of larger, high intensity/catastrophic fires. They also provide safe opportunities for wildland fire-fighters to suppress large fires and/or minimize their impact to surrounding resources. This safety aspect is critical when dealing with fires that occur in areas with wildland-urban interfaces that inherently have higher risks and resource values at stake. Openings also help to mitigate those risks and minimize the loss to resource values (i.e. timber products, recreation opportunities, wildlife habitat, private property, and utilities).
For more information about the Hiawatha National Forest’s 2019 prescribed burn plans, visit the Forest’s News and Events page or contact the Zone Fire Management Officer.