Prescribed Burns Near Ruidoso Scheduled for February

RUIDOSO, NM - Feb. 16, 2021 — The Smokey Bear Ranger District on the Lincoln National Forest is planning to take advantage of the recent snow to conduct prescribed burns in the Grindstone Project Area southwest of Ruidoso and in South Fork Campground starting as early as tomorrow, Wednesday, February 17.

Crews will begin by targeting areas in Indian Canyon and will expand further into the unit as conditions allow this winter and spring. The prescribed burns will include broadcast burning and pile burning, depending on the location. Fire crews will be on scene from the beginning of ignitions until there is no longer a threat of escape from the project boundaries.

Prescribed burning provides many benefits and is essential to maintaining healthy forest ecosystems. It provides habitat diversity, recycles plant nutrients into the soil, and encourages new growth for various plants which improves forage for animals. Prescribed burning also reduces the threat of large-scale wildfire impacts by removing excess wood on the forest floor and removes ladder fuels which can cause wildfires to climb to the tops of trees.

Smoke may be visible in the Grindstone Lake area, Ruidoso and along Carrizo Canyon Rd. and Hwy 70. Smoke from the prescribed burn in South Fork Campground may be visible along Hwy 107. Although smoke from prescribed fire can still be a nuisance, it is usually for a shorter time and considerably less smoke than wildfires produce.

Additional information will be posted on

Perk and Grindstone PIO Map

Grindstone and Perk Prescribed Burn Map (PDF)

South Fork Campground Prescribed Burn Map

South Fork Campground Prescribed Burn Map (PDF)