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Northern Hills burn piles ignited for forest management

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) – Every year, forest managers burn thousands of slash piles across the Black Hills National Forest. Districts in the Northern Hills are beginning burns this week.

Starting Jan. 5, 2021, the Bearlodge Ranger District will burn hand and machine piles. These piles are along Moskee Road to Grand Canyon Road to Schoolhouse Gulch, about 15-17 miles southeast of Sundance.

The Northern Hills Ranger District will burn piles near Clayton Draw, Deadwood Lodge and along Rifle Pit, which includes areas east of Tinton Road and the Limestone Ridge area, starting Jan. 5 and throughout the week.

Smoke may be visible and impact local communities, forest managers say.

Igniting burn piles reduces “hazardous fuels across the Black Hills,” like fire and insect infestations. Burns also make fire suppression operations safer in the summer, the Black Hills National Forest Fire Managers say on their website.

Crews will continue to burn as conditions allow and their burn plan is met. Firefighters continually monitor and check the piles for several days after being lit, the National Forest Service says.

More pile burning information and notifications can be found here, on Facebook or on Twitter.

Copyright 2021 KOTA. All rights reserved.

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