Forest Service prepares for slash pile burning near Empire and Evergreen

Contact(s): Travis Mason-Bushman

IDAHO SPRINGS, Colo.—January 17, 2020—As conditions allow, firefighters from the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests plan to burn slash piles to reduce hazardous fuels in the following areas:

  • Blue Creek (3,000 hand piles) – Northwest of Empire along the U.S. 40 corridor.
  • Echo Hills (1,300 hand piles) – 4 miles west of Evergreen, along Highway 103 near Echo Hills and Beaver Brook subdivisions.
  • Evergreen (200 hand piles) – Near Evergreen, .5 mile southwest of Highway 78 and Cub Creek Trail.

Smoke may be visible from the Empire, Echo Hills, Beaver Brook and Evergreen areas.

Wind helps disperse smoke created during pile burning operations and snow helps keep the piles contained. Seeing flames and smoke, even after dark, is part of normal operations. This reduces fuels on the landscape under the safest conditions.

Conditions are evaluated each day to determine if ignition will take place. Ignitions are generally expected to begin after 10 a.m. and will cease several hours before sunset. Smoke may be visible. Precipitation, wind, temperature, fuel moisture, and staffing all play a part in when and whether ignition occurs. Firefighters monitor the area after burning is complete. Public and firefighter safety is always the number-one priority in burning operations.

If you know someone who would like to receive updates on pile burning activities on the Clear Creek Ranger District, have them send an e-mail to and ask to be added to the Clear Creek Ranger District Prescribed Fire list. To unsubscribe, please reply with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line.

For a complete list of locations where pile burning will occur this season, as well as updated accomplishments and photos, visit our InciWeb page at