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News Release

Smoke Expected Near Hermit Park - Do Not Call 911

Department: Natural Resources
Release Date: Apr 9, 2013

Contact Information:

Jeffrey Boring, Resource Specialist, (970) 679-4569

A spring storm that dusted the Fort Collins and Loveland area resulted in about four inches of snow accumulation in Estes Park, enough to prompt slash pile burning at Hermit Park Open Space, southeast of Estes Park. Pile burning will begin Tuesday morning and continue throughout the day if weather conditions allow. Pile burning will continue the remainder of the week if wind speeds remain calm and snow continues to accumulate.   
Burning piles is part of an on-going wildfire mitigation/forest health project on Larimer County parks and open space properties, involving mechanical thinning, hand piling tree limbs and pile burning. Over 200 piles at Hermit Park Open Space were targeted for burning this winter. However, only 50 piles have burned since Thanksgiving 2012, due to poor snow accumulation and strong winds.
These forest management projects are part of an on-going effort to:
1.      Reduce fuel loading to decrease the likelihood of catastrophic fires
2.      Remove trees damaged by insects and disease
3.      Restore forested areas to a healthier condition, improving wildlife habitat
To meet safety and regulatory requirements piles are burned after snow storms, when at least three inches of snow is on the ground. Please do not call 911 or local law enforcement, as they are already aware of these burns. 
To learn more about Larimer County’s parks and open spaces,
visit our website at
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