Prescribed burns planned near Bondurant
BONDURANT — The Big Piney Ranger District of the Bridger-Teton National Forest anticipates initiating the next phase of the Monument Ridge Vegetation and Recreation Management Project later this fall. The project area is located on the Big Piney Ranger District of the Bridger-Teton National Forest near the town of Bondurant in Sublette County. The habitat/fuels treatment area is situated within the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI). Monument Ridge borders the western edge of the treatment area, and the residential area along the Hoback River borders the eastern edge.
The project, proposed by the Sublette County Collaborative, is multifaceted. It encompasses fuels reduction actions within the WUI, wildlife habitat enhancement activities and safety and access improvements for recreation. These activities will improve forest health, promote wildlife populations for elk, mule deer and sage grouse and provide sustainable recreation opportunities well into the future.
A prescribed fire is scheduled the first week of October on 2,150 acres north of the Monument Ridge Lookout and Hoback Guard Station. The Forest Service prepared this area in 2020 by felling trees and allowing the fuels to cure during the intervening time, preparing an adequate fuel bed for the planned prescribed fire.
The Forest Service will implement the prescribed fire with weather and climate conditions in mind to meet prescribed fire objectives. The prescribed fire objectives are to treat the area in a mosaic pattern producing mixed severity results. These results create a complex mix of patches of different severity ranging from unburned patches to low severity patches, where only ground fuels burn, to high severity patches where canopy and ground fuels burn. These activities will enhance habitat by increasing forage (i.e., grass, forbs and shrubs) and will stimulate aspen growth in areas where stands have declined due to the lack of wildfire disturbance, according to the Forest Service. During operations, smoke may be visible from Bondurant, Big Piney, Pinedale and Jackson. Aerial resources will implement ignitions for a period of three to five days, with smoke expected for 1 to 2 days after ignitions.
For more information, call Big Piney Ranger District at 307-267-3375 or visit https://gacc.nifc.gov/gbcc/dispatch/wy-tdc/home/information/prescribed-fires.