Soil repair begins in Kyle Canyon after Carpenter 1 wildfire
Photo: Video by ktnv.com
CREATED Sep. 22, 2013
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- A month after firefighters contained the 27,883 acre Carpenter 1 wildfire, crews returned to the air Sunday hoping to limit some of the negative impacts of the blaze.
Helicopter crews are dropping loads of straw on more than 400 acres in Kyle Canyon, beginning with a large patch near the Rainbow Subdivision.
"This unit he is starting in is the most important, because it is directly uphill from the Rainbow track of homes and we found it to be the most consistent with the treatment applications," Mike Papa with the Burn Area Emergency Response team said.
The Forest Service’s Burn Area Emergency Response Team is hoping to blanket the selected sites with between one and two inches of mulch.
While they said the project may help slow runoff in the canyon, they said the main objective is helping the natural vegetation.
"We are trying to return that seed bank up on the hill to normal, rather that washing it down and in turn having the downstream effects on sediment, flooding, whatnot, but really the focus of this project is for one to three years down the road," Papa said.
Each time the helicopter picks up a load it is lifting about 2,000 pounds of straw and carrying it to one of the nine designated sites where it is dropping the straw on the fire scorched ground from about 200 feet above.
"He can be as accurate as 50 to 100 feet with where he places that straw, again wind will play a factor," Papa said.
With the project coming in under initial estimates, forest service crews are hoping to use the leftover funding for other repairs in the Spring Mountains.
"Some of the others include road signs and trail signs. Bringing in possibly some forest service crews or other contractors to fall hazardous trees along trails and parking areas," Papa said.
The contractors believe they can get all of the work done in five full days, but the Forest Service has scheduled the project for 10 days.
They say that is because of winds in the canyon that prevented them from doing work Saturday and slowed the work Sunday.