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Pile burning in June Lake, Crowley Lake

inyo national forest service

Pile burning in June Lake, Crowley Lake


BISHOP, Calif., March 7, 2024 — Over the next few weeks, Inyo National Forest fire personnel will be looking for windows of opportunity to conduct approximately 135 acres of pile burning in the June Lake and Crowley Lake communities to restore forest health and reduce hazardous fuels.

“Pile burning has already been performed in these two areas in years prior, however due to the southwest aspect of the units melting snow faster than in other spots, the timing between weather events has made burning the remaining scattered piles challenging,” said Jeffrey Karl, a Fuels Battalion for Inyo National Forest.

“We’ll likely have less than a day to mobilize and take the opportunity to burn when the snow levels are just right and the fuels are not too saturated to ignite,” he said.

June Lake:

  • 125 acres located on the northwest side of June Lake itself.
  • Flames and smoke will be visible from Highway 158 (June Lake Loop), Northshore Drive. Smoke will also be visible from Highway 395.

pile burning june lake crowley lake

Crowley Lake:

  • 10 acres located within the Aspen Springs and Hilton Creek communities.
  • Flames and smoke will be visible from Crowley Lake itself and the community of Crowley Lake, Highway 395, Aspen Springs, McGee Creek, and potentially Sunny Slopes near Rock Creek.

pile burning june lake

Smoke is expected to drift away from the aforementioned communities. Some smoke may settle into the valleys overnight, so please do not report or call 911. Smoke may impact recreation activities in the area, so smoke-sensitive individuals are advised to use caution. Visit fire.airnow.gov to check particulate levels before you visit the area. 

Updates will be released via:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/inyonf

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Forest website: www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/inyo/alerts-notices

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After ignitions are complete, smoke may continue to be visible up to a week while firefighters continue mopping up.

Ignitions are closely coordinated with the Great Basin Unified Air Pollution Control District and National Weather Service meteorologists to ensure desired weather patterns and smoke dispersal are in place in order to minimize impacts to communities, highways, and adjacent residences before ignitions.

These pile burns are a part of the implementation of the “June Loop Hazardous Fuels Reduction Project” completed in 2011, and the “Crowley Communities Fuels Reduction Project” completed in 2010.

If the burning of these piles goes well and weather conditions continue to be favorable, firefighters will move on to burn additional piles in the South Fork community in Bishop Creek area, and in Reds Meadow once snow levels start to recede.

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