On Monday, March 25, firefighters in the U.S. Forest Service’s San Jacinto Ranger District tested the conditions to conduct a prescribed burn on Thomas Mountain in Garner Valley this week. The test was successful and the burn started Tuesday. Courtesy Zachary Behrens, U.S. Forest Service, San Bernardino National Forest

The U.S. Forest Service confirmed that it is proceeding with its scheduled prescribed burn on Thomas Mountain in Garner Valley this week. The project’s goal is creating community-scale defensible space and enhanced forest health.
“After a successful test burn of 10 acres on Monday, March 25, crews plan to continue work on the 1,074-acre burn unit if weather conditions remain safe for operations,” wrote Zachary Behrens, public affairs officer for the San Bernardino National Forest. “Hand crews and a helicopter will be used to implement the broadcast burn … Crews will only move forward each day when weather conditions are safe for burning. Personnel will remain on site 24 hours/day during operations.”
Originally, about 1,100 acres were scheduled, but that has been slightly reduced, according to Behrens.
“Only 30 to 70 percent will be treated in a mosaic pattern to create age diversity among the vegetation,” he added.
“This year’s project will take place on the northeast slope, which faces Garner Valley,” Behrens wrote. “Due to the terrain and accessibility of this year’s burn unit, a low-flying helicopter may be used for ignitions in coordination with ground crews.”
For more information, the Forest Service offers several options for the public to visit. Contact the San Jacinto Ranger District at 909-382-2922, the Prescribed Burn Hotline at 909-382-2711, or the Forest’s Twitter site at https://twitter.com/SanBernardinoNF.

This map depicts the outline of the Forest Service’s Thomas Mountain prescribed burn, which is occurring this week. Courtesy U.S. Forest Service, San Bernardino National Forest
Firefighters from multiple stations joined forces to extinguish a mobile home fire at the Mt. Baldy Trailer Park on Thursday, March 21. No one was home and the interior was destroyed. Photo by Steven King