Forest treatments get final OK |

Forest treatments get final OK

summit daily news
Summit County, CO Colorado

SUMMIT COUNTY ” Touting unified community support for active forest management, Dillon District Ranger Rick Newton Friday announced final approval for the Dillon Reservoir forest health project. The first phase targets about 1,400 acres in areas hardest hit by mountain pine beetles.

The overall project calls for forest health and fuel reduction projects on 3,300 acres through 2018, including 290 acres of defensible space treatments along the wildland-urban interface.

The Forest Service will begin preparations for tree-cutting and put out bids for the project this summer, but no trees will likely be cut in 2007, said timber management specialist Cary Green. He doesn’t expect the contracting to be completed until September of this year, so the logging will actually start next spring.

“By the time we do our field work, we’re probably looking at ’08,” Green said.

The areas targeted first include the hillsides around Wildernest and Ruby Ranch, extending toward the Maryland Creek area, as well Lake Hill (on both sides of I-70 between Frisco and Dillon) and Heaton Bay, Green said. After that, the focus would shift toward Keystone and the Frisco peninsula.

Green said the Forest Service is expecting another big flight of beetles this year, with no real slowdown in the spread of the infestation.

“It’s looking like another big year,” he said.

Newton said the forest health project won’t stop the mountain pine beetle epidemic, but will help speed the process of re-establishing a new, young forest in the area, as well as helping to reduce wildfire threats to residential areas and infrastructure in the area.

For more information, contact Newton at (970) 262-3451, Cary Green at (970) 827-5715, or Sally Spaulding at (970) 945-3206.

Bob Berwyn can be reached at (970) 331-5996, or at

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