Payson Ranger District fire personnel plan to eliminate piles of vegetative debris using prescribed fire throughout the Gordon Canyon and Christopher Creek areas Nov. 30 through Dec. 3.
In the Gordon Canyon area, fire personnel will eliminate 132 acres of vegetative debris piles. Residents and visitors to the area can expect to see and smell moderate to heavy amounts of smoke each day of the operation. Residual smoke will remain in the area during evening hours due to cold, inert fall air.
Fire personnel will also conduct elimination of vegetative debris piles on 355 acres in the Christopher Creek area during the same time. Residents and visitors to the area can expect to see and smell heavy amounts of smoke during each day of this operation.
During daytime operations, smoke may be seen in the areas of Highway 260, Christopher Creek and Hunter Creek. Diurnal airflow in the evening hours will move smoke down the See Canyon corridor into Tonto Creek and will likely impact Bear Canyon and Kohl's Ranch.
To minimize the impact of smoke, fire personnel will end ignitions in both locations by 3 p.m. each day. When fire operations begin, signs will be posted along roads that will likely be affected by smoke. Motorists are urged to use caution when driving through these areas.
For information about prescribed fire and mechanical fuels reduction operations, call the Payson Ranger District at (928) 474-7900. Residents can also stay updated on forest prescribed fires at www.fs.usda.gov/Tonto. To report a wildland fire, the fire emergency number is (480) 457-1555.