SFNF Pecos/Las Vegas Plans Rowe Mesa Prescribed Burn

SANTA FE, NM – April 2, 2021 – Fire managers on the Santa Fe National Forest (SFNF) hope to find an optimal window in April to continue implementation of the previously announced East Rowe Mesa prescribed burn located east of NM State Road 34 approximately 10 miles south of the village of Pecos.

Hand and aerial ignitions could begin as early as Monday, April 5. The decision to proceed on the 4,328-acre unit will depend on favorable conditions, including available resources, fuel moisture levels, air quality, ventilation, wind direction and weather forecasts. Prescribed fires are always managed with firefighter and public safety as the first priority.

The East Rowe Mesa project is designed to protect communities by reducing the accumulation of hazardous fuels and decreasing the potential for future severe wildfire. Prescribed fire mimics a natural fire regime by using low-intensity fire to improve forest health and restore fire-adapted ecosystems.

Smoke management is a key part of the planning and implementation of prescribed burns. The SFNF manages prescribed fires in compliance with New Mexico state regulations on air quality and smoke management.

Smoke from the Rowe Mesa prescribed burn may impact the communities of Santa Fe, Pecos, Las Vegas, Rowe, Glorieta, La Cueva, North and South San Ysidro, Ilfeld, San Jose, San Juan, Tecolote, Soham, Ribera, Serafina, Bernal and Anton Chico as well as the I-25 corridor, Forest Road 34, County Road 63A and the Pecos National Historical Park.

Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory problems or heart disease are encouraged to take precautionary measures. Information on air quality and protecting your health can be found online at the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) Environmental Public Health Tracking (EPHT) website. Information on the Forest Stewards Guild’s HEPA Filter Loan Program is available here.

Fire updates will be posted on the SFNF website, New Mexico Fire Information website, Inciweb and on the Santa Fe National Forest Facebook page and Twitter @SantafeNF.

For more information on the Rowe Mesa prescribed burn, contact the Pecos Ranger Station at 505-757-6121 or the Las Vegas Ranger Station at 505-425-3534.

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