South Dakota

Fire Crews Burn Slash Piles across the Black Hills National Forest

Spearfish, SD; November 29, 2016 – Forest Managers are working to reduce hazardous fuels across the Black Hills National Forest.

Starting today & continuing through the week into next week, Northern Hills fire will be burning piles located South of Aspen Hills Rd, East of Forest Service Road (FSR) 134.1, North of 222.2 and off of FSR 207, west of Rochford Rd.

Throughout the winter, Districts across the Black Hills National Forest are focusing efforts on burning hand and machine slash piles. Piles are created from timber sale slash and tree thinning operations.

“It is very important to reduce fire and insect hazards by reducing fuel buildup,” said Todd Pechota, Black Hills National Forest Fire Management Officer. “With today’s snowfall in the northern hills and extended forecast, conditions are good for reducing these forest fuels through pile burning.”

Smoke will be visible and may impact local communities across the Black Hills for the next several months. Smoldering material may continue to burn days after burning operations are completed. Crews will continue to burn as conditions permit. Firefighters continually monitor and check the piles for several days after they have been lit.

“We appreciate the support from the communities,” said Pechota. “Being able to reduce these fuels this time of year makes fire suppression operations safer during the summer months.” 

Burning operations will continue throughout the winter as conditions permit.

For more pile burning information and notifications, follow the Black Hills National Forest on Facebook: or Twitter:

For more information on the Black Hills National Forest, visit

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