Crystal Lakes Wildfire Mitigation
- Client: Larimer County
- Date: Jul 2016 to Jul 2017
- Info: Larimer County hired Blue Mountain Environmental Consulting to oversee hazardous fuels treatment on open space surrounding a 100-acre subdivision in the wildland-urban interface.
The project was located in unincorporated Larimer County, approximately six miles south of the Colorado/Wyoming border. The subdivision is surrounded by approximately 400,000 acres of Arapahoe and Roosevelt National Forests. This forest is unmaintained and presents a critical fire threat. The current mortality rate of the forests surrounding the subdivision is extremely high.
The open space areas are extremely steep, with slopes of 20% – 30%. The slopes are heavily vegetated with dense crown cover, which make them a high fire-spread risk. The open space tracts selected for the project will become shaded fuel breaks, allowing for the effective reduction in wildfire risk throughout the subdivision.
Blue Mountain Environmental Consulting conducted a homeowner’s association meeting and a Home Ignition Zone demonstration for homeowners. We utilized GIS to flag boundaries and riparian areas, conducted a forest stand evaluation to identify the quantity of forest material to be removed. On various properties, we marked individual trees to create fuel breaks, while monitoring the project implementation.