October 21 Update
Sean Brenton and Stan Baker have completed the Branch 7 section upgrade. The improvement over the previously teeth rattling and outward slanted running surface is enjoyed by all travelers, and has greatly improved safety for Dave Sicotte Trucking as winter conditions set in.
Timber Ridge Contracting has made good progress in Block 2 and we hope to finish the block by the end of October (or earlier), since the loaded logging trucks need skidder assistance to climb the steep spur grade out of the block in wet weather. The wildfire risk reduction work Shane is implementing and which we developed in collaboration with Cathro Consulting Ltd is transforming previously fire endangered forest into fire resistant types that will both, slow the spread of a wildfire and promote less dangerous fires confined to the forest floor rather than fires raging in the tree tops.
October 6 Update
September 22 Update
Harvesting is nearing completion in Block 5 and Shane’s equipment will move downhill to Block 2 during the next few days. Recreation trails will remain closed in Block 5 for the following clean-up phase, which is done with heavy equipment and involves saw work, pruning tree crowns, piling debris and pile burning. Recreation trails will be restored and safety assessed after this work is completed and re-opened later in the fall.
August 25 Update
Primary harvesting is complete in Block 3 and equipment has moved uphill to Block 5 today. We now need to close the upper Viewpoint trail and the Buchanan Fire Access Trail from the top of No Brakes to the 5km marker for public safety. We will be working in this area until at least September 18 and will update this post once harvesting is completed. Note: this closure will also affect recreation throughway from South Fork via the Buchanan Fire Access Trail.
August 7 Update
June 30 Update
May 4 Update Snow is melting fast and we have picked up work on the Kaslo-Shutty Wildfire Corridor, where we left off when we were snowed out last December. The new access spur is in place, but is still very soggy and soft as we go through the spring freshet. We have closed access to this new road for vehicle traffic as indicated on the map for 3 reasons: 1. to let the road settle in 2. to prevent firewood cutting of our beetle trap decks which must remain in place until mid summer. 3. to protect everyone from injury while industrial activities are under way.
Funding secured ! The KDCFS has applied for and will receive $280,000 funding from the Wildfire Risk Reduction Grant administrated by the BC Wildfire Service/FLNRORD to assist with fuel remediation in this area. This work is implemented through the BC Provincial Strategic Threat Analysis and addresses Risk Class 1 and 2 priority areas. On a local level it is informed through the 2016 Kaslo and Area D Community Wildfire Resilience Plan, as well as our new 2020 KDCFS Landscape Level Wildfire Plan. Preliminary planning has identified harvest fuel treatment units between Kaslo and Cooper Creek which will be implemented over the next 3 years. The Kaslo/Shutty Wildfire Corridor is the first of these treatments for which we constructed a 1km access extension towards McDonald Creek at the end of 2019. Timber Ridge Contracting is scheduled to do this harvest fuel reduction work, which will extend through much of the summer.
The Kaslo Wildfire Corridor Strategy forms part of the KDCFS Landscape Level Wildfire Plan (LLWP) and was developed over a two year timeframe in consultation with the community and stakeholders: Objectives: 1. To change fire behaviour 2. To increase safety to fire fighting personnel and equipment 3. To increase speed of response 4. To improve access to water 5. To implement an effective, economic and defensible wildfire corridor 6. To enhance species diversity and stand resiliency towards climate change Solutions: Objective 1 : Integration of natural topographic features to reduce Rate of Spread. Reduction of available fuel for combustion. ➢ a series of benches slows upslope fuel pre-heating and provides a strategic location for a new access structure / maintained fuel break, to skirt the North side of Kaslo. Integration of existing cutblocks and further fuel reduction in timber strips to reduce fire intensity and spotting potential. Objective 2: Creation of defensible anchors meeting safe zone definition, fuel mitigated access structures and variable access points. ➢ large fuel reduced openings that provide reduced fire intensity and improved visibility for air and ground response. Helicopter landing zones with easy approach. Fuel treated access corridors and a choice of access/exit routes. Forest management is favouring WUI stocking standards and clean harvest practices, and will aim to introduce species diversity to improve stand forest health susceptibility. Objective 3: Access improvements ➢ new construction of 1 km road and 300m skid trail to improve water connectivity with other ATV access points through private lot. An additional 400m skid trail facilitates top access to the immediate Kaslo interface. Narrowing the ground response gap to the poorly accessed Zwicky hillside. Grading, brushing and improvements to main Branch 7 access surface. Objective 4: Private land collaboration (McDonald Creek) ➢ new access connects with water in McDonald Creek and/or allows transport of water into the immediate Kaslo interface. Participation of private land owner to provide alternate ATV access point and access to water from a strategically located lot. Objective 5: Expansion of existing anchors and geographic features ➢ shared wildfire defense corridor for Kaslo and Shutty Bench South that allows cost-effective implementation, lasting benefits and mechanical maintenance opportunity. Objective 6: Silviculture management to effect species diversity, density and deciduous component. ➢ future stand dynamic is more resilient towards pest, disease and climate extremes.