Prescribed Fires Beginning Jan. 26: Bureau of Land Management – Albuquerque District

Beginning on Jan. 26 and likely continuing through the weekend, the Bureau of Land Management, Albuquerque District, plans to begin ignitions in several prescribed fire units on the district. Fire crews will begin at the Wild Horse Slash Pit, located off of the Wood Camp Road near the Wild Horse subdivision in Catron County. Following completion of Wild Horse Slash Pit, fire crews will move to either the Tank Canyon Pile Burn or the Cerro Comadre Pile Burn, depending upon weather conditions.

Tank Canyon Pile Burn – 215 acres, located approximately 25 miles north of Pietown and about 2 miles east of the York Ranch Road in the vicinity of the Wild Horse subdivision.

Cerro Comadre Pile Burn – 220 acres, located within the El Malpais National Conservation Area. The goal of this project is promotion of ponderosa pine and native grasses in the area as well as to create defensible spacing in neighboring communities by using prescribed fire.

As ignitions occur through the week, some smoke will be visible in the burn areas for up to a week after ignition operations are completed. Firefighters will monitor the burns until there is no visible smoke. To alert motorists on burn days, prescribed fire signs will be posted near the burn locations. Motorists should use caution in the vicinity of the burns and be aware that smoke from the fires could reduce visibility.

The Tank Canyon and Cerro Comadre piles were created as part of thinning projects, in order to reduce wildfire risk, improve ecosystem health, improve wildlife habitat and help protect local communities from wildfire. The Wild Horse Slash Pit is burned annually in conjunction with the local Wild Horse Fire Department as a community service woody debris disposal site.

Prior to and during all prescribed fires, fire managers coordinate with the New Mexico Environment Department and follow all air quality regulations. People who are either susceptible to or affected by COVID-19 may have health conditions that also make them vulnerable to smoke exposure. For more information about smoke and protecting your health, please visit

Please call the Socorro Field Office at (575) 835-0412 with any questions about these projects. For information about this, and other prescribed burn operations, as well as wildland fire updates please visit

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