TAOS, N.M. (KRQE) – The Forest Service reports that if conditions are right Carson National Forest fire managers may begin the Mesita prescribed burn between Monday, April 12 and Monday, April 19. According to forest officials, the 902-acre burn will take place in the Canjilon Wildland Urban Interface and will help to protect communities and to reduce hazardous fuels before the 2021 fire season.

In a news release, the Forest Service says the decision to carry out a prescribed burn depends on several conditions including national wildland fire preparedness level and resource availability, fuel moisture levels, air quality, ventilation, the weather forecast, and winds. Additionally, during the pandemic, fire managers also consider how communities will be impacted by smoke.

The Forest Service reports the following projects are under consideration between now and the end of May:

  • Approximately 4,967 acres for the Ring unit within the Valle Vidal near Cimarron, New Mexico. The intent is to treat fuels that have accumulated over the last 15 years and reintroduce fire onto the landscape to imitate a more natural fire regime.
  • 920-acre broadcast burn for the North Hart Canyon unit in the Valle Vidal.
  • 1,300 acres for the La Jara unit in Taos Canyon.
  • 140-acre broadcast burn for the Eul unit on Carracas Mesa in the Jicarilla Ranger District.
  • 1-acre pile burn on Cabresto Mesa in the Jicarilla Ranger District.
  • 902 acres for the Mesita broadcast burn in Canjilon, New Mexico.
  • 1,243 acres for the Ensenada broadcast burn in El Rito, New Mexico.
  • 1,893 acres for the Martinez Canyon broadcast burn in Tres Piedras, New Mexico.

Smoke from the planned Mesita prescribed burn may be visible from Canjilon, Cebolla, Placita Garcia, Rio Blanco, Abiquiu, and El Rito.