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Cut Juniper Firewood in Kaibab Nat’l Forest

Cut Juniper Firewood in Kaibab Nat’l Forest
May 13
15:15 2019

fuel wood cuttingWilliams, Ariz., May 13, 2019—For Immediate Release. The Kaibab National Forest is offering the opportunity to cut live juniper in designated areas on the Williams and Tusayan districts as part of its 2019 paid personal use firewood permit program.

Those interested in harvesting live juniper, also known locally as green juniper and cedar, should purchase a firewood cutting permit at the following locations and during the specified hours Monday through Friday, excluding federal holidays:

  • Williams Ranger District, 742 S. Clover Road, Williams; 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; (928) 635-5600
  • Tusayan Ranger District, 176 Lincoln Log Loop, Tusayan; 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; (928) 638-2443

Once a permit has been obtained, the holder will be given a detailed map showing designated roads along which live juniper can be cut. These roads and areas were specifically targeted by forest managers in order to both provide more opportunities for the collection of forest products and to help create fuel breaks through the removal of excess material.

Juniper trees, as well as some other conifer species, have become much more abundant over the past century for a variety of reasons including historical livestock grazing and fire suppression. They have severely encroached on historic grasslands and savannas, which has resulted in altered fire regimes and degraded wildlife habitat, water and nutrient cycling, and soil integrity.

Besides implementing large-scale grassland restoration projects that include juniper removal, the Kaibab National Forest is also seeking opportunities to work with firewood cutters as partners in forest restoration efforts, including this year’s expanded live juniper harvest areas. By removing dead and down as well as small-diameter trees, firewood cutting can help improve forest health, reduce the risk of unnaturally severe wildfire, and limit further conifer encroachment in key areas.

In 2018, the Kaibab National Forest launched a pilot program that increased the amount of wood available to each person for purchase while reducing the cost per cord by crediting firewood cutting for the contribution it provides to forest restoration goals. Each person, with proper identification, may obtain permits for up to 30 cords per season of combined paid-use and free-use firewood on the Williams and Tusayan districts. Individuals may purchase up to two 10-cord paid-use firewood permits at a rate of $2 per cord, and may obtain one 10-cord free-use firewood permit.

All firewood permits issued by the Kaibab National Forest will include a map and detailed cutting regulations as well as load tags, which must be physically attached to each ¼ cord of firewood and visible from the rear of the vehicle. The goal of this load tagging system is to ensure accountability for the amount of wood removed from the forest and to inform planning for future firewood cutting areas to meet public need and forest restoration objectives.

To continue fostering the partnership with firewood cutters this season, the Kaibab National Forest is taking additional steps to improve the program for customers. Permit holders will receive a detailed guide that highlights the ecological impacts that collecting firewood can have on forest resources and describes best practices that will ensure the sustainability of these resources across the landscape and over time. Forest managers will also be seeking public feedback and suggestions for program improvements throughout the year. Those obtaining permits are encouraged to offer their comments, concerns, and ideas.

The removal of firewood is permitted only from National Forest lands on the specific district for which the permit is issued. Firewood cutters are reminded to take note of property boundaries and cut only in designated areas on National Forest lands.

The 2019 firewood cutting season opened May 1 and continues through Dec. 31 for the Williams and Tusayan districts of the Kaibab National Forest. Detailed maps for live juniper harvesting areas and other firewood cutting information and guides are available on the Kaibab National Forest website at http://bit.ly/KNFfuelwood.

Kaibab National Forest information is also available through the following sources:

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