Gila National Forest – Two Prescribed Burns planned for Quemado Ranger District

20180926_Chimenea RX Burn Maps QRD 220180926_Freeman Mtn RX Burn Map QRD

Quemado, NM, September 27, 2018—For Immediate Release.  The Quemado Ranger District, Gila National Forest is planning on igniting 5,200 acres broadcast burning starting in mid-October through early November.  Two broadcast burns are planned; Chimenea Springs and Freeman Mountain.

The Chimenea Springs prescribed burn is an estimated 1,000 acres located on Slaughter Mesa approximately 6 miles southeast of Quemado Lake Subdivision and Quemado Lake Recreation Area.  The Freeman Mountain prescribed burn is an estimated 4,200 acres located in the East Centerfire area approximately 8 miles northeast of Luna, NM.

Both prescribed burns are located in Game Unit 15. The district is requesting that you avoid hunting or camping in or along these two project areas due to increased fire-related activity.  Both prescribed fire areas will be signed in advance of implementation.

Prescribed fires are one of the most effective tools available to resource managers and mimic natural fires by reducing forest fuels, recycling nutrients and increasing habitat diversity.  Prescribed fires are designed to meet specific objectives, including reducing hazardous fuels, reintroducing fire across portions of these landscapes, and to reducing the probability of future wildfires impacting private property, infrastructure, and natural and cultural resources.  Fire managers consider forecasted weather, fuel moistures and other conditions to determine optimal windows to conduct controlled burns. Prescribed fires are always managed with firefighter and public safety as the first priority.

Smoke will be visible in the area, and has the potential to impact nearby residence and highway travel.  Fire managers will monitor smoke impacts and utilize all methods of ignitions techniques/sequences to minimize smoke when possible.  The Forest Service will coordinate with New Mexico Environment Department and Department of Health to issue any needed alerts. Smoke-sensitive individuals and those with respiratory or heart disease should take precautionary measures.  Air quality information and health protection measures are posted online at the New Mexico Department of Health’s website:  Updates and further information will be posted on

For information on the Gila National Forest, check out our website at or join the conversation on Facebook at or follow us on Twitter @GilaNForest.


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