Gatton’s Park Fuels Treatment Project has begun

Release Date: Feb 1, 2018  

Mimbres, NM, February 2, 2018—For Immediate Release.  Work started on the Gatton’s Park on Thursday January 25, 2018. This funding for this project is a as a result of approval for a Collaborative Forest Restoration Program Grant is being administered by the Grant Soil and Water District. The Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) treatment was selected to reduce fire risk and enable landscape-scale fire restoration on Upper Mimbres planning area of the Gila NF.  Southwest Tree Solutions began thinning 40 acres adjacent to private property. Due to wildlife concerns, the operations in this unit will cease on April 1.  Work will continue in the area at various times throughout various time of the year. All material, except for chips, will be utilized by contractors. 

The treatment area includes 237 acres of ponderosa pine, pinyon, and juniper on the Wilderness District, Gila National NF, in southwest New Mexico.

photo of thinned forest area                          photo of dump truck and chipper                   photo of wood chip pile

Photos from left to right: Thinning at Gatton’s Park, Equipment-dump truck and chipper, Chip pile

The goals of the grant are to increase the capacity of contractors, Gila National Forest staff and stakeholders to work productively together towards the shared goal of increasing the pace and scale of restoration on the Gila NF. Training for project partners and stakeholders will be offered through presentations by successful collaborative initiatives in the region.

The public is discouraged from entering this area due to falling and heavy equipment operations.

A part of the operation includes chipping small trees and limbs. The chips from this project are being transported to the junction of the Celebration Site Road and State Highway 35 and are free to the public for personal use under the following conditions:

  • Chips must be collected during daylight hours on Fridays, Saturdays or Sundays

  • A tarp must be used when transporting on state and county roads

  • You must be able to load and transport your own chips. Neither the Forest Service nor the contractor will load chips into vehicles

For information on the Gila National Forest, check out our website at http://www.fs.usda.gov/gila or join the conversation on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GilaNForest/ or follow us on Twitter @GilaNForest.