LAS VEGAS, N.M. (KRQE) – A new environmental assessment report from the U.S. Forest Service outlines what it might take to restore thousands of acres of forest land after the Hermits Peak-Calf Canyon wildfire. The report was recently approved, meaning restoration work can now begin.
The report discusses work to be done on more than 24,000 acres of land impacted by both the Hermits Peak-Calf Canyon Fire and the 2020 Luna Fire. Without restoration work, the report says there’s a risk that another fire could ignite in the burn scar.
The U.S. Forest Service plans to assess the land for artificial regeneration (tree planting). The report says there are about 3,500 acres of land that have been identified for tree planting within the Hermits Peak-Calf Canyon burn scar so far. The Forest Service will likely consider local stock of conifer trees for the replanting efforts. The Forest Service will also do aerial seeding in some areas.
In addition to planting, the Forest Service will also remove dead trees. They have identified more than 21,000 acres that need material removal.
Waterway repairs are also on the agenda for Hermits Peak-Calf Canyon recovery. The Forest Service says they will consider work to protect water infrastructure. But much of this work will likely occur after the dead-fuel treatment begins.