Forest Service starts new clear cut

BOULDER, Colo. – The Boulder Ranger District of the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests and Pawnee National Grassland will begin cutting trees near Lump Gulch Road, Peakview Road and Magnolia Road to implement portions of the Lump Gulch Fuel Treatment Project (signed in July 2009) and Forsythe Fuels Reduction Project (signed in August 2012).

Contractors plan to enter the area later this week or next week, and will begin work along Lump Gulch Road and Bobcat Trail in Gilpin County, moving northward as individual units are completed.

Treatments will create more forest openings and remove dead trees, expand existing meadows and aspen stands. The purpose of these activities is to alter potential fire behavior by lowering the intensity and slowing the rate of spread on National Forest System (NFS) lands adjacent to private property.

“These units consist of mostly lodgepole pine stands, which are susceptible to stand-replacing wildfire and insect and disease infestation. A high percentage of trees in these stands have been killed by mountain pine beetle. Treatments are designed to improve protection of lives, infrastructure and local communities from wildfire while also improving forest health,” said Boulder District Ranger Sylvia Clark.

Specific prescriptions vary from one treatment unit to another. In general these treatments will:

* Remove overstory trees on units up to 20 acres in size, while retaining residual individuals and buffers between units

* lodgepole pine trees will be cut

* conifers near aspen stands will be cut

* live ponderosa pine, blue or Engelmann spruce, Douglas-fir, limber pine and aspen are targeted to be retained
Treatments will be accomplished through the use of heavy equipment. Slash material will be piled for later chipping or burning. Hours of operation are expected to be 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Sundays. Approximately 400 truckloads of material are expected to be removed from a total of 204 acres of NFS lands under this contract. For more information contact the Boulder Ranger District at 303-541-2500.