Highway 108 Stragetic FireSafe Plan

Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan
July 2005

Cooperatively planning and implementing a strategic fire defense system designed to reduce the threat of loss to life, property, and resources along Highway 108 in the Tuolumne County wildland urban intermix assessment area.

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Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan

 Table of Contents

List of Figures

List of Tables

Executive Summary

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan represents a unified, collaborative planning effort. Working together, County, State, and Federal Fire Protection Agencies, large private landowners (cooperators), and the Highway 108 Fire Safe Council have come together to mitigate fire problems and improve fire protection for Tuolumne County, an area of significant catastrophic large fire occurrence.

Located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada range, Tuolumne County consists of numerous, small, isolated communities located in the wildland urban interface zone. Fire related problems within the wildand urban interface zone are complex and there is no one single solution to the successful control and containment of fire. Wildfire does not respect political or ownership boundaries. This strategic plan represents the cooperation, commitment, dedication, and leadership of many partners working together to mitigate fire problems, to minimize devastating impacts and to protect natural resources, life and property.

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan is linked to other fire planning efforts as called for through the National Fire Plan (NFP – August 2000), the Healthy Forests Initiative (HFI – August 2002) and the Healthy Forests Restoration Act (HFRA – December 2003).

The National Fire Plan (NFP) was developed in August 2000, as we, as a nation, set out to maintain and restore our fire-adapted ecosystems. Following a landmark wildland fire season, the NFP was developed with the intent of actively responding to severe wildland fires and their impacts to communities while ensuring sufficient firefighting capacity for the future. As we began to implement the NFP, many of the barriers plaguing our management emerged.

The Healthy Forests Initiative (HFI) helped us tackle our gridlock of process impeding our restoration objective, including, treatment of hazardous fuels. The HFI resulted in the development of a number of administrative tools and included a call for congressional help to further reduce procedural barriers. The result was the passage of Healthy Forests Restoration Act (HFRA) of December 2003. Its passage sent a strong message of support for reducing fuels and restoring forest health, especially in the wildland/urban interface. Within the HFI, the HFRA helps to streamline some of our processes and get more work done on the ground that will ultimately restore and maintain our fire-adapted ecosystems. It’s what we set out to do in 2000 under the NFP, and it’s still the goal today.

The HFRA provides communities with a tremendous opportunity to influence where and how federal agencies implement fuel reduction projects on federal lands. A Community Wildfire Protection Plan is the most effective way for communities to take advantage of this opportunity. For Tuolumne County, a county-wide Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP) was completed in January 2005. The Tuolumne County (CWPP) is a comprehensive plan that combines all the County’s pre-fire components into one document. This Plan includes a description of Tuolumne County; a discussion of the stakeholders, fuels, weather, level of service and assets at risk in the County; Fire Safe Councils’ Plans; Strategic Groups Plans; and a discussion of the institutional issues related to the implementation of the Plan. The Plan also addresses how Agencies are trying to mitigate the wildland fire hazard and ignition problem in Tuolumne County.

Upon completion of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan will be added to the Tuolumne County CWPP as an appendix. For a portion of Tuolumne County, the Highway 108 Plan provides more detail as to the desired strategic fire defense systems needed to protect communities and resources. The SouthWest Interface Team (SWIFT) Plan of 1999 is also an appendix and provides strategic guidance for the Highway 120 corridor.

Within Tuolumne County, it is expected that smaller communities (homeowners associations and/or subdivisions) will began to work on more detailed, community wildfire protection plans for their immediate area. The Tuolumne County CWPP serves as the ‘umbrella’ for the two completed corridor strategic plans and will serve as such for any future, smaller community planning efforts. Strategic fire defense systems are established within SWIFT and the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plans. Within community plans, the Fire Safe Councils will help identify projects and seek grants/funding.

Strategic fire defense systems – along with fuels treatments – are key to the success of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan. An interagency/cooperator/Fire Safe Council program of work has been developed, recommending actions and setting priorities for improved fire protection. The Plan is a living document, being re-visited and updated annually as projects are completed, as defense system maintenance needs are identified, and as funding is secured for additional project implementation. All project work identified in the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan will be done using a coordinated, interagency/cooperator approach.

Introduction

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan represents an interagency/cooperator approach to mitigating the impacts from wildfire. The goal of the strategic plan is to cooperatively plan and implement a strategic fire defense system designed to reduce the threat of loss of life, property and natural resources in the Highway 108 corridor wildland urban interface zone. Located in Tuolumne County, the project location is in an area of significant catastrophic large fire occurrence (see Map A-1: Recorded Fire History within the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project Area).

Project Area

Project Location

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan covers an area of approximately 235,472 acres located in the Sierra foothills and mountains of Tuolumne County (see Figure 1 or Map A-2: Project  Vicinity Map). Ranging in elevation from approximately 800 to 6500 feet, the project area is generally bound by the Middle Fork of the Stanislaus River to the north; the North Fork of the Tuolumne River to the east/southeast; and Melones Reservoir/the Middle Fork of the Stanislaus River to the west/northwest (see Figure 2 or Map A-3: Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project Area).

Figure 1: Project Vicinity Map

Figure 2: Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project Area

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan project boundary was selected based on logical topographical boundaries, fire management units, communities at risk, and adjacent planning efforts. Fire Management Units (FMU’s) are defined in detail for the Stanislaus National Forest in the Glossary of Terms found on page 41. In general, FMU’s describe fire management goals and objectives adjacent to communities and within low and high elevation areas. At the highest elevation (northeastern boundary), the project boundary coincides with the change from FMU 2 to FMU 3. The southeastern boundary of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan project area lies up against the SouthWest Interface Project Boundary (SWIFT), a strategic fire plan for southern Tuolumne County and Northern Mariposa County. It is anticipated that at some point in the future, a strategic fire plan covering areas to the north and west of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan project area (Highway 4 in Calaveras County) will be initiated.

All or portions of six watersheds (5th field Hydrologic Unit Code) lie within the Highway 108 Strategic Plan project area (Upper Middle Fork Stanislaus River, Lower Middle Fork Stanislaus River, South Fork Stanislaus River, Stanislaus River, North Fork Tuolumne River and the Tuolumne River – Don Pedro Reservoir). Within these watersheds, the five following five landscapes were identified as part of the 2002 Central Stanislaus Watershed Analysis (CSWA): Dodge Ridge, Lyons, Pinecrest, Rose Creek and Sand Bar Flat.

Topographically, the Highway 108 Strategic Plan project area ranges from level, low-lying lands, to rolling hills, to mountainous terrain with steep, narrow canyons. Vegetation types include annual grasslands, dense brush fields, plantations of young trees, oak/shrub interface areas, and mature and overstocked timber stands, some with a thick, brushy understory.

Within the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan project area, there are several “Communities at Risk” (See Map A-4: Communities at Risk). Within these areas, federal, state and local fire Agencies, cooperators, the Highway 108 Fire Safe Council, and Indian tribes are working together to collaboratively identify priority areas within their respective jurisdictions that would benefit from hazardous fuel reduction activities.

Land Ownership Patterns

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan project area consists of a variety of land ownership. A breakdown of land ownership acreage is shown in Table 1.

Table 1: Land Ownership By Acreage

LAND OWNER

ACRES

Local/Privately Owned Lands

130,794

Stanislaus National Forest

76,867

Bureau of Land Management

15,481

United States Bureau of Reclamation

9,524

Me-Wuk Tribal Lands

1,700

State Lands – State Land Commission

1,106

TOTAL PROJECT ACRES

235,472

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Map A-5 shows the interface pattern of land ownership within the project area.

Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group

Catastrophic wildfires have been part of the Sierra Nevada for decades. During this time, coordination and cooperation of firefighting personnel between fire protection agencies has been ongoing. Most cooperative fire-fighting efforts have focused on quick suppression activities, moving away from allowing fire to play its natural role in the environment. Decades of fire suppression efforts have left the fuel loads heavy, often leading to more catastrophic results when wildfire does occur.

During the same time period, the human population of the Sierra foothills has increased steadily. This has resulted in a larger, more populated and complex wildland urban interface zone. The corresponding increased demand for fire services in the wildland urban interface zone can only be met with proactive, community based involvement and response.

In recent years, more and more coordination between fire protection agencies has occurred. With the Federal Register publication of Communities at Risk, a more formal gathering of fire protection agencies, large private landowners, and interested private citizens began to take place. As a result, the Highway 108 Fire Safe Council was formed in 2002. Patterned after the California State Fire Safe Council model, the Highway 108 Fire Safe Council has worked tirelessly over the past three years to empower local communities to do their part to become fire safe. Typical Fire Safe Council goals include: educating the public about fire threat and fire prevention measures; reducing the potential for catastrophic fire; reducing fuel loads; maintaining air and water quality, and promoting a healthy Forest. The Highway 108 Fire Safe Council operates through volunteerism, in-kind donations, grants and financial contributions.

In concert with the Highway 108 Fire Safe Council efforts, in March 2004, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group formed. Made up of County, State, and Federal Fire Protection Agencies and large private landowners (cooperators), the purpose of this group was to cooperatively plan and implement a strategic fire defense system designed to reduce the threat of loss of life, property, and natural resources within the Highway 108 corridor wildland urban interface zone.

The HWY108 Planning Group consists of the following agencies and cooperators:

  • USDA Forest Service, Stanislaus National Forest
  • [UFS1] Tuolumne County Fire Department
  • [UFS2] California Dept. of Forestry and Fire Protection – Tuolumne Calaveras Unit
  • United States Bureau of Land Management
  • United States Bureau of Reclamation
  • Sierra Pacific Industries
  • Highway 108 Fire Safe Council[UFS3]
  • Tuolumne Band of the Me-Wuk Indian Tribe

Several Agency representatives to the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group are also members of the Highway 108 Fire Safe Council. The Fire Safe Council has been active for the past three years and these efforts will continue. With the publication and subsequent implementation of the Highway 108 Strategic Plan, three critical roles have been identified for the Highway 108 Fire Safe Council:

  1. Continue to educate and assist individual property owners in making their privately owned property more fire resistant/fire safe.
  2. Serve as a formal, non-profit entity that can apply for various funding types and grants for projects that Agencies can not apply for.
  3. Assist in working with private landowners where strategic fire treatments on private lands are key to the success of the overall strategic defense system. The Fire Safe Council can assist in securing resources for both planning and treatment implementation within identified areas.

Members of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group have developed and signed a Memorandum of Understanding outlining the purpose, benefits and interests, and responsibilities of the participating agencies and cooperators in developing and implementing the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan. The Memorandum of Understanding can be found in Appendix B. Appendix C contains a Communication Plan developed by the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group. The purpose of the Communication Plan is to ensure that communication goals and objectives are met, and that the involved fire protection agencies and cooperators speak with a single voice as they cooperatively plan and implement strategic fire defense system projects within the planning area.

Within this Strategic Fire Plan, the total fire environment was analyzed. Based on the analysis, treatments needed to create a strategic fire defense system across jurisdictional boundaries and a variety of land ownership were identified. Priorities for treatments have also been addressed.

The local Fire Safe Council, homeowner associations, local business owners and private landowners must continue to be involved and do their part within the each local community and/or subdivision. By working together, a more fire safe environment will result in minimizing losses of life, property and natural resources when a wildfire does take place.

Analysis of the Total Fire Environment

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan was completed using a standardized process called the Strategic Fire and Resource Protection Planning Process. The process was developed by the SWIFT team in 1999 and it includes an analysis of the total fire environment. It is similar to community fire planning processes currently being used. The process begins with the identification of the project area and key agencies and players that need to be involved.

Next, data is gathered for the following elements within the project area: fire history, communities at risk, fuel types, condition class, and resource values at risk. Existing fuelbreaks and past fuel reduction projects are mapped. Finally, a strategic look at where fire defense systems are needed takes place. The result is a list of projects identified across the landscape that, once completed, will assist fire protection agencies to minimize the loss of resources and destruction that may take place as the result of a wildfire.

For the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan existing data and information from other planning efforts and documents was used. For example, the August 17, 2001 Federal Register publication identifying communities at risk was used. From the local area, the 2002 Central Stanislaus Watershed Analysis (CSWA) – a landscape level assessment – contained fire related maps and data and identified resources or values at risk. An ongoing Stanislaus National Forest planning effort – the development of a Five Year Vegetation Treatment Management Plan – was referenced during the development of this Strategic Plan. The Tuolumne Calaveras Unit Fire Plan and another local ongoing effort – the Tuolumne County Community Wildfire Protection Plan – were also referenced in completing this Strategic Plan.

Components of the total fire environment for the Highway 108 Strategic Plan project area referred to above can be found in various appendices as follows:

  • Fire History, Map A-1
  • Communities at Risk, Map A-4
  • Condition Class, Map A-6
  • Resource Values at Risk, Appendix D
  • Existing Fuelbreaks, Map A-7
  • Past Fuels Reduction Projects, Map A-8

Weather, topography and fuels influence the behavior of fire within the Sierra Nevada. Land managers and fire protection agencies have no control over the weather or the topography. Fuels, however, can be modified through a variety of treatments to slow the spread of fire. The range of possible fuel reduction treatments include: fuelbreak and defensible fire profile zone (DFPZ) construction, shredding, biomass treatments, mastication, thinning, prescribed burning, goat and cattle grazing, etc.

During the development of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan, fuel reduction projects completed within the project area over the past 15 years (1991 – 2003) were mapped in 5-year increment groupings. Typically, ten years after treatments take place, the effectiveness of the treatment begins to fade unless some type of ‘maintenance’ activity follows. For those projects that were completed from 1991 – 1995, re-entry to maintain the effectiveness of the treatment must be part of the coordinated program of work.

After considering each of the components listed above, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group assessed all of the information from a strategic viewpoint. That is, the goal was to strategically place fire defense systems on the landscape in such a manner that will give the fire protection agencies a reasonable chance of stopping the fire spread under various conditions (fuel types, fuel loading, weather, firefighter safety, available resources, etc.). It is not the intent of the strategic plan to be able to control all fires. Fires that occur in the very top spectrum of fire behavior conditions are likely to breach fire defense systems no matter what system is in place. However, it is expected that the strategically placed fire defense systems that this collaborative effort plans and implements will handle most wildland fire situations.

A Coordinated Program of Work

The success of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan is dependent on the ongoing and long-term partnership of the fire protection agencies and cooperators involved. Each year, projects will be accomplished. Additional projects will be identified. Maintenance needs will become apparent. Joint coordination and collaboration and setting priorities on an ongoing (annual) basis will be necessary. As per the Memorandum of Understanding, specific work projects or activities that involve the transfer of funds, services, or property among the various agencies and cooperators will require the execution of separate agreements and will be contingent upon the availability of appropriated funds.

Collaboration and partnerships must reach beyond the Strategic Planning Group. The Highway 108 Fire Safe Council, homeowner associations, local business owners and private landowners must continue to be involved and do their part within each local community and/or subdivision and on every privately owned parcel. By working together, a more fire safe environment will result in minimizing losses of life, property and natural resources when a wildfire takes place.

The collaboration and partnership efforts that need to happen are not a new idea. Such efforts have been taking place over the past few years. The Stanislaus National Forest has been actively involved in Forest fuels reduction projects for some time. Over the past 3-4 years, Forest Staff have also been regular participants with other Agencies, Fire Safe Councils, and communities in other local fuel reduction projects. Inmate crews from Sierra Conservation Center and the California Conservation Corps have contributed countless hours to fuels/slash reduction efforts and fuelbreak maintenance throughout the planning area over the past couple of years.

In addition to working together to implement on-the-ground projects, a coordinated effort is needed to search for and find funding sources beyond annual Agency appropriations. Within the authority of the National Fire Plan, federal dollars can be used on adjacent non-federal lands for protecting communities when hazardous fuel reduction is planned on national forest lands that have the potential to place such communities at risk. Funding opportunities may also exist through outside grants and partnerships. Where Federal agencies may be restricted from applying for some grants, the Fire Safe Council and other non-profit entities – as well as individuals – can be competitive. By having the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan in place – and through recognizing its connections and relationships to other area plans and documents – folks (individuals, groups, partners & agencies) can reference and tier to it when applying for various project funds.

Currently, ongoing projects are being funded though the Forest Service (agency appropriations and National Fire Plan grants), the Tuolumne County Resource Advisory Committee (RAC), the Alliance for a Fire Safe California, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Proposition 40), and through outside funding sources and volunteer contributions. Additional information regarding the funding sources available for community protection/fuels hazard reduction projects can be found in Appendix E. This information will be updated as new funding mechanisms and opportunities become available.

Table 2 contains a list of projects that have either been completed or are currently in progress to meet fuels reduction goals within the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project Area. In addition to the project name/proponent and description, the units treated (or to be treated) and sources of project funding are presented.

The recent and ongoing efforts listed in Table 2 represent a small, but critical piece of the overall effort needed to make this Strategic Plan a success in protecting communities at risk in Tuolumne County. Appendix F contains a sample tracking form to be used to document annual project accomplishments within the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan project area.

Tracking accomplishments will also help to identify maintenance needs and to develop the program of work for upcoming years.

Table 2: Recently Completed or Ongoing (Funded) Fuels Reduction/Strategic Fire Projects

PROJECT NAME/PROPONENT

DESCRIPTION

UNITS

FUNDING

California Department of ForestryAnd Fire Protection Expansion of Four Fire Safe Councils Four Fire Safe Councils $101,300 federal grant; $20,700 match
Mi-Wuk Sugar Pine Fire Protection District Mi-Wuk Sugar Pine Fuelbreak 58 acres $79,740 federal grant; $39,500 match
Mi-Wuk Area Homeowners Association Fuel Reduction Program 900 tons $80,000 federal grant; $75,000 match
Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians Purchase of Wood Chipper for Fuels Reduction Projects 1 chipper purchased $25,000 federal grant; $7,884 match
California Alumni Association Fuel Reduction Project 300 tons $40,000 federal grant; $40,000 match
Highway 108 Fire Safe Council Fire Safe Program 5100 tons $90,000 federal grant; $315,000 match
Mi-Wuk Homeowners Association Fire Safe Program 600 tons $40,000 federal grant; volunteer time match
Highway 108 Fire Safe Council Skyline Drive Fuelbreak 10 acres $24,000 federal grant, volunteer time match
Stanislaus National Forest/Tuolumne County/California Dept. of Forestry Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Coordinator Coordinator identified; plan in progress $30,000 RAC1 grant; $4,800 federal match
Highway 108 Fire Safe Council Hazardous Fuels Removal 1000 tons $46,875 RAC grant; $50,000 other match
California Alumni Association Hazardous Fuels Removal/Generate Electrical Power 300 tons $50,000 RAC; $50,000 other match
Columbia Volunteer Fire Department Residential Chipping Service Equipment purchased; slash service beginning $50,000 RAC; $15,600 other match
Mi-Wuk Sugar Pine Fire District Mi-Wuk Sugar Pine Fuelbreak 60 acres $50,000 RAC; $11,000 federal match
Stanislaus National Forest Mi-Wuk Fuelbreak 200 acres $18,000 RAC; $8,050 federal match; $3,600 other match
Stanislaus National Forest Little Sampson Fuel Reduction 798 acres $137,500 RAC; $178,500 federal match
Stanislaus National Forest Highway 108 Community Protection 175 acres $20,650 RAC; $6,500 federal match
California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Ponderosa Hills Evacuation Plan Evacuation Plan $2,000 federal grant
California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Gibbs Ranch Evacuation Plan Evacuation Plan $4,000 federal grant; $4,000 state match
Stanislaus National Forest Fire Access Road Mtc. 35 miles maintained $100,000 RAC funding; $4,800 federal match

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


1
RAC = Resource Advisory Committee

As a result of the analysis of the total fire environment for the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning project area, many projects were identified that reflect individual components of the overall strategically placed fire defense systems needed to successfully provide increased fire protection. While individual projects may include a variety of treatments, all of the projects identified fall into two categories: 1) fuelbreak or defensible fire profile zones (DFPZ) and control line construction and/or maintenance; and 2) vegetation treatment/fuel reduction projects.For ease of display, presentation and discussion of the needed strategic fire defense systems identified within the Highway 108 Strategic Plan project area, thirteen geographical planning zones have been delineated. Planning zones are displayed on Map A-9 and a brief description of each geographical area follows:

FS ZONE – Pinecrest/Strawberry: The Pinecrest/Strawberry zone includes 12,028 acres and is located at the northeast end of the project area. Most of the zone is National Forest System (NFS) lands located on the Summit Ranger District. Communities at risk within this zone include all or portions of Pinecrest, Strawberry, Bumblebee and Cow Creek.

FS Zone – South Highway 108: The South Highway 108 zone includes 5,000 acres and is located south of Highway 108 to the project boundary. The zone follows the CDF Battalion 5 boundary on the southwest edge. The majority of the zone is NFS lands located on the Mi-Wok Ranger District. Communities at risk within this zone include all or portions of Cold Springs and Long Barn.

FS Zone – Lyons: The Lyons zone includes 23,160 acres and is located between Highway 108 on the east and, in general, Grant Ridge to the west. At the upper end of the Lyons zone, the boundary goes from Crandall Peak to Spring Gap, then follows Forest Road 4N14 to the Mi-Wok District boundary. To the southwest, as Grant Ridge fades, the Lyons zone boundary drops into the South Fork of the Stanislaus River drainage, following the river to the west to the Forest Boundary. The majority of the zone is NFS lands located on the Mi-Wok Ranger District. Communities at risk within this zone include all or portions of Long Barn and Cedar Ridge.

FS Zone – Mt. Knight: The Mt. Knight zone includes 49,352 acres and is located between Grant Ridge on the east and the Forest boundary on the north and west edges. The southern zone boundary follows the CDF Battalion 5 boundary. The majority of the zone is NFS lands located on the Mi-Wok Ranger District. Communities at risk within this zone include Jupiter.

CDF Zone 5-A (Columbia): Zone 5-A (Columbia) includes 13,121 acres. The north and west edges of the zone follows the Battalion 5 boundary. The south/southwest edge of the zone follows Highway 49. The east edge of the zone follows Sawmill Flat and Yankee Hill roads to Blewitt’s Point, then goes north to the Battalion 5 boundary. The majority of the zone is privately owned lands. Communities at risk within this zone include all or portions of Columbia and Tuttletown.

CDF Zone 5-B (Sonora/Yankee Hill/Big Hill): Zone 5-B (Sonora/Yankee Hill/Big Hill) includes 16,255 acres. It is located to the east of Zone 5-A (Columbia). The northern boundary follows the Battalion 5 boundary. The southern boundary follows Rawhide Road to Highway 108. The eastern boundary follows Highway 108 to Sonora, then Lyons Bald Mountain Road to Old Oak Ranch. The majority of the zone is privately owned lands with some federal lands (BLM and Forest Service) intermixed. Communities at risk within this zone include all or portions of Sonora and Big Hill.

CDF Zone 5-C (Phoenix Lake): Zone 5-C (Phoenix Lake) includes 11,452 acres. It is located to the east of Zone 5-B (Sonora/Yankee Hill/Big Hill). The southeastern boundary follows Highway 108. The northern boundary follows Lyons Bald Mtn. Road, then travels cross country to Big Hill Road. The majority of the zone is privately owned lands. Communities at risk within this zone include all or portions of Sonora, East Sonora, Mona Vista and Phoenix Lake.

CDF Zone 5-D (Twain Harte/Cedar Ridge): Zone 5-D (Twain Harte/Cedar Ridge) includes 11,202 acres. It is located to the north of Zone 5-C (Phoenix Lake). The northern boundary follows the Battalion 5 boundary (vicinity of National Forest System lands). The eastern boundary follows Highway 108. The majority of the zone is privately owned lands with some National Forest System lands and some cooperator lands intermixed. Communities at risk within this zone include all or portions of Twain Harte and Cedar Ridge.

CDF Zone 5-E (Mi-Wuk Village/Highway 108 East/Tuolumne Road North):

Zone 5-E (Mi-Wuk Village/Highway 108 East/Tuolumne Road) includes 15,734 acres. It is located to the east of Zone 5-D (Twain Harte/Cedar Ridge). The eastern boundary follows the project boundary. The southwestern boundary follows Soulsbyville and Black Oak Roads. The southern boundary follows Tuloumne Road to Cherokee Road, then continues to the east on Buchanan Road. The majority of the zone is privately owned lands. Communities at risk within this zone include all or portions of Soulsbyville, Arastraville, Confidence and Mi-Wuk Village.

CDF Zone 5-F (Melones): Zone 5-F (Melones) includes 22,087 acres and is located surrounding New Melones Reservoir. The majority of the zone is private lands, United States Bureau of Reclamation lands and BLM lands. Communities at risk within this zone include portions of Tuttletown and Jamestown.

CDF Zone 5-G (Montezuma/Hog Mountain): Zone 5-G includes 23,330 acres. It is located to the southeast of zone 5-F. The west boundary follows Highway 108. The northern boundary follows Seco Street and Algerine Roads. The southern boundary follows Highway 120 to Chinese Camp, then the Battalion 5 boundary to the southeast and east. The majority of the zone is privately owned lands. Communities at risk within this zone include all or portions of Jamestown and Stent.

CDF Zone 5-H (Jamestown/Wards Ferry): Zone 5-H includes 13,265 acres. It is located to the northeast of zone 5-G (Montezuma/Hog Mountain). The west boundary follows Highway 108. The southern boundary follows Seco Street and Algerine Roads. The northeastern boundary follows Wards Ferry Road. The majority of the zone is privately owned. Communities at risk within this zone include all or portions of Jamestown.

CDF Zone 5-I (Standard/Tuolumne City): Zone 5-I (Standard/Tuolumne City) includes 21,029 acres. It is located east to the northeast of Zone 5-H, the southeast of Zone 5-C, and south of Zone 5-E. The southwest edge of the zone follows Wards Ferry Road. The northwest edge of the zone follows Highway 108. The northeast edge of the zone follows Soulsbyville, Black Oak, Cherokee and Buchanan Roads. The eastern edge of the zone follows the Battalion 5 boundary. Communities at risk within this zone include Soulsbyville, Standard and Tuolumne City.

Table 3 lists the strategic treatments needed (fuelbreaks/control lines and fuel reduction projects) within each planning zone. Fuelbreaks and control lines are listed by name with agency jurisdiction indicated. Table 3 indicates whether each fuelbreak/control line is existing or planned. Existing fuelbreaks have been constructed and maintained on-the-ground. Planned fuelbreaks do not yet exist on-the-ground. Mapped locations of planned fuelbreaks are approximate. Planning for these desired fuelbreaks must be completed followed by on-the-ground construction/implementation.

Table 3 also lists the fuel reduction projects proposed within each planning zone. Information provided includes the project name, agency jurisdiction, planned treatment and approximate acres to be treated. Larger fuel reduction projects are generally located on National Forest System or cooperator lands (Sierra Pacific Industries) due to the complexities of planning and implementing projects on private lands with many landowners involved. Several zones within the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan do not have any large fuel reduction projects currently identified. Within each zone, however, aggressive compliance of the State of California – Public Resources Code (PRC) 4291 is identified. PRC 4291, effective January 1, 2005, increases the minimum clearance (defensible space) requirement from 30’ to100’.

Project planning will be needed for new fuelbreak and fuel reduction projects. Planning efforts typically includes some level of environmental analysis following the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) on federal lands or California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) on other lands. A brief introduction to NEPA/CEQA and area contacts for NEPQ/CEQA questions can be found in Appendix G.

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group also identified adequate access as an important component of the Strategic Plan. Adequate road access is needed both for getting fire-fighting resources to strategic locations as well as to provide for evacuation of residents. Specific access projects have not been identified as part of the Strategic Plan. As Strategic Plan priority projects are planned and implemented, associated access needs will be considered.

The information displayed in Table 3 is visually depicted in Appendix A. Maps 9.1-9.9 contain the strategic defense systems needed (fuelbreaks/control lines and fuels reduction projects) within each planning zone.

Table 3: List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuels Reduction Projects) Within Each Planning Zone

FS ZONE – PINECREST/ STRAWBERRY
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Strawberry (portion)

FS

Existing

6.34

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

Beardsley Line DFPZ

FS

Pile & Burn

247

Donnell Line DFPZ

FS

Pile & Burn

340

Pinecrest Fuel Reduction

FS

Thinning/Biomass

960

Strawberry Hazard Reduction

FS

Thinning/Biomass

650

HWY 108 CommunityProtection

FS

Pile & Burn

175

D53 Roadside HazardousFuels Reduction

FS

Shredding or Pile & Burn

50

Leland Meadow HazardReduction

FS

Thinning/Biomass

650

D53 Thin

FS

Shredding or Pile & Burn

200

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

FS ZONE – SOUTH HIGHWAY 108
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Jenness Park

FS

Planned

1.64

Long Barn (portion)

FS

Planned

3.70

3N73 (portion)

FS

Planned

0.39

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

Sammy Fuel Reduction

FS

Underburn

300

South 108 Fuel Reduction

FS

Thinning/Biomass Removal Shredding/Burning

2870

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

FS ZONE – LYONS
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Bald Mtn.

FS

Planned

2.98

3N73 (portion)

FS

Planned

1.90

4N15 (portion)

FS

Planned

0.95

Grant Ridge (portion)

FS

Existing/Planned

3.30

Mt. Elizabeth (portion)

FS

Planned

2.96

South Fork

FS

Planned

1.96

South Fork #1

FS

Planned

2.64

Five Mile

FS

Existing/Planned

2.25

Strawberry (portion)

FS

Existing/Planned

3.22

Cedar Ridge (portion)

FS

Planned

1.18

Long Barn (portion)

FS

Planned

0.31

Middle Fork (portion)

FS

Planned

0.13

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED

TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

Sampson Fuels Reduction

FS

Biomass Removal

510

South Fork

FS

Thinning/Biomass Removal

1180

Lyons Creek

FS

Thinning/Biomass Removal

734

SPI Planned Projects

SPI

Timber Harvest (group selection/variable retention)

501

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

FS ZONE – MT. KNIGHT
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Stanislaus

FS

Existing

11.84

Middle Fork (portion)

FS

Planned

1.84

Wisehart

FS

Planned

1.36

Middlefork #2

FS

Planned

1.56

Star Ridge

FS

Planned

3.20

American Camp

FS

Existing

2.33

Contention

FS

Planned

4.05

Noonday

FS

Planned

1.15

Grant Ridge (portion)

FS

Existing/Planned

7.93

French Camp

FS

Planned

1.53

Mt. Elizabeth (portion)

FS

Planned

0.19

4N15 (portion)

FS

Planned

0.08

South Fork #1

FS

Planned

0.31

Strawberry (portion)

FS

Existing/Planning

0.70

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

Sampson Fuels Reduction

FS

Biomass Removal

628

SPI Planned Projects

SPI

Timber Harvest (group selection/variable retention)

232

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

CDF ZONE 5-A (COLUMBIA)
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Marble Quarry

CDF

Planned

0.53

Cattle Drive Trail

CDF

Planned

4.77

Horseshoe

CDF

Planned

2.06

Bennett Ranch/Springfield Estates

CDF

Planned

2.78

Parrots Ferry

CDF

Planned

1.78

Norwegian Gulch (portion)

USBR

Existing

1.00

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 


CDF ZONE 5-B (SONORA/YANKEE HILL/BIGHILL)
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Old Oak Ranch/Clovis USD (portion)

CDF

Planned

2.37

Yankee Hill/Big Hill

CDF

Planned

1.88

Five Mile (portion)

FS

Existing/Planned

1.18

Cattle Drive Trail

CDF

Planned

0.16

French Camp

FS

Planned

0.12

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

 

CDF ZONE 5-C (PHOENIX LAKE)
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

No projects identified.
VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

 

CDF ZONE 5-D (TWAIN HARTE/CEDAR RIDGE)
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Cedar Ridge

CDF

Planned

2.34

3N73 (portion)

FS

Planned

0.17

Old Oak Ranch/Clovis USD (portion)

CDF

Planned

0.79

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

Regional Learning Center FuelsReduction (Clovis USD)

PVT

Thinning/Piling/Buring

15

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

CDF ZONE 5-E (MI-WUK VILLAGE/HIGHWAY 108 EAST/TUOLUMNE ROAD NORTH)
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Mi-Wuk/HWY108

CDF/FS

Existing/Planned

4.99

Skyline

CDF

Existing

0.56

Provo

CDF/FS

Planned

2.28

Hacienda

CDF/FS

Existing/Planned

3.60

Rancheria

CDF

Existing

0.92

Greater Tuolumne City

FS/CDF/BLM/PVT

Planned

2.70

Long Barn (portion)

FS

Planned

0.37

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

D51 Roadside Brush

FS

Brushing

575

Mt. Provo Fuel Reduction

FS

Shredding/Thinning/Biomass Removal/Goat Browsing/Burning

1670

Skyline Dr./Turnback Creek CanyonFuel Reduction Project

PVT

Brush Removal

146

Greater Tuolumne City

FS/CDF/BLM/PVT

Thinning/Shredding/Burning &

4291 (defensible space)

4500

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

 

CDF ZONE 5-F (MELONES)
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Manzanita

USBR

Planned

0.55

Heron Gulch

USBR

Planned

0.66

Peoria Truck

USBR

Existing/Planned

2.74

Peoria Mountain

USBR

Existing

2.95

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

CDF ZONE 5-G (MONTEZUMA/HOG MOUNTAIN)
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Richards

CDF

Planned

2.65

Hog Mountain

CDF

Planned

2.62

Slate Creek Control Line

CDF

Planned

4.39

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

CDF ZONE 5-H (JAMESTOWN/WARDS FERRY)
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

No projects identified.
VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

CDF ZONE 5-I (STANDARD/TUOLUMNE CITY )
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

STATUS

(Existing, Planned or Both2)

APPROXIMATE FUELBREAK MILEAGE

Tuolumne City

CDF

Planned

5.89

Baker

CDF

Planned

6.07

Wards Ferry Road Control Line

CDF

Planned

1.04

Wards Ferry/Turnback Creek

CDF

Existing

1.37

Greater Tuolumne City

FS/CDF/BLM/PVT

Planned

0.85

Provo

CDF/FS

Planned

0.07

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PROPOSED TREATMENTS

 

APPROXIMATE ACREAGE TO BE TREATED

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

Fuel Removal

Every home/landowner parcel

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategic Fire Plan Implementation

Improving fire protection, mitigating fire impacts, and minimizing devastating impacts to all resources in Tuolumne County is an ongoing process. As part of this strategic planning effort, many needed projects that will contribute to the overall strategic fire defense system for the Highway 108 corridor have been identified. Once completed, ongoing maintenance of the defense systems must be considered. At any one time, there are more needs than there are resources to work with. Prioritizing projects for implementation and maintenance becomes a critical aspect of the development of annual work plans for all agencies and cooperators.

There are many ways to prioritize projects when limited resources are available. Some methodologies lead to very specific project rankings based on values assigned and total points. This typically results in a single priority project being identified. Other methods result in priority groupings. Priority groupings suggest that several projects are of the highest priority and they all need to be accomplished. The importance of a single, high priority project over the other high priority projects is not determined.

In the past couple of years, a variety of methods and criteria have been used to set priorities for treatments/projects in strategic fire plans and community fire planning efforts throughout the West. Within the Forest Service and CDF Agencies, direction exists to assist fire managers in prioritizing projects for treatment.

In developing the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan project priorities, the Planning Group reviewed prioritization methods and criteria used by other groups in recent or ongoing fire planning efforts. This included efforts by the SouthWest InterFace Team (SWIFT), the Stanislaus National Forest 5 Year Vegetation Treatment Plan, the State of California Community Fire Plan Planning Process, the Tuolumne Calaveras Unit Fire Plan, and the Tuolumne County Community Wildfire Protection Plan. Existing agency plans and direction was also reviewed and included the Stanislaus National Forest Fire Management Plan (Forest publication 2002) and the 2003 Wildland Urban Interface/Interface – Implementation Direction for Identifying and Prioritizing Hazardous Fuel Reduction (R5 Publication). A brief discussion of each of these other fire planning efforts and project prioritization methods used in each is contained in Appendix H.

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group review of prioritization methods and criteria found some common elements used in most all of the recent fire planning efforts. These included: protection of life and property in the wildland urban interface zone (communities at risk); providing for firefighter and public safety; and condition class or fuel hazard rating. Many methods considered other resource values at risk and willing partners/cooperators available to assist with project funding and implementation.

As a result of the review of other planning efforts and existing direction, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group decided to use the following prioritization attributes: whether or not the project was within the wildland urban interface zone (further defined as the core, defense, or threat zone), vegetative condition class, fuel type ranking, and whether or not completion of a specified project tied into an existing defense system. Priority groupings were then used to develop project implementation priorities.

Table 4 contains the planned strategic defense systems (fuelbreaks, control lines and fuels reduction projects) identified within each planning zone. For each project, information related to each prioritization attribute is displayed. Whether or not the project lies within the wildland urban interface (WUI) is indicated, and further identified as within the core, defense, or threat zone. Condition class and fuel type ranking is listed for each project. Table 4 also indicates whether or not each project ties to an existing defense system. Priority groupings are assigned for fuelbreak/control line projects in column six of the table. (Brief definitions of the prioritization attributes and groupings are contained at the end of Table 4. More detailed definitions of some attributes are found in the Glossary of Terms.

As is displayed Table 4, all of the fuel reduction projects are located on Federal and cooperator lands. For Forest Service lands, each of the projects identified in this Plan is also identified within the draft Stanislaus National Forest Five Year Vegetation Management Treatment Plan. This five year plan is used to develop and implement the Forest Service annual program of work. Priorities for the entire Forest are being discussed as the Five Year Vegetation Management Treatment Plan is finalized. Fuel reduction project priorities will not be re-assessed within this Strategic Plan. As currently identified, priorities for National Forest fuel reduction projects within the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan project area for 2005/2006 are shown in column 6 (scheduled year of implementation unless otherwise noted). If the project is not currently on the program of work for 2005/2006, the project has been assigned a priority grouping. This information will be used when evaluating project priorities beyond 2005/2006.

Table 4: List of Strategic Defense Treatments (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuels Reduction Projects) Within Each Planning Zone

FS ZONE – PINECREST/ STRAWBERRY
List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Strawberry (portion)

Existing

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
Beardsley Line DFPZ

N

3

High

Yes

2005

Medium

Donnell Line DFPZ

N

3

Very High

Yes

4 – Low

Medium

Pinecrest Fuel Reduction

Y-T

3

Very High

Yes

2005

Medium

Strawberry Hazard Reduction

Y-D/T

3

High

Yes

2005 Planning

Medium

HWY 108 CommunityProtection

Y-D

3

High

Yes

2005

Medium

D53 Roadside HazardousFuels Reduction

N

3

High

No

2005

Medium

Leland Meadow HazardReduction

Y-D

3

Moderate

No

2005 Planning

Medium

D53 Thin

Y-D

3

High

No

2005

Medium

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-C/D/T

3

Very High

Yes

2005

Medium

 

FS ZONE – SOUTH HIGHWAY 108
List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Jenness Park

Y-D

3

Very High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

Long Barn

Y-D

3

High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

3N73 (portion)

Y-D

3

Very High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
Sammy Fuel Reduction

Y-C/D/T

3

Very High/High

Yes

Completed 2004

Medium

South 108 Fuel Reduction

Y-T

3

Very High/High

Yes

2005

Medium

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-C/D/T

3

Very High/High

Yes

2005

Medium

 

FS ZONE – LYONS
List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Grant Ridge (portion)

Existing

Strawberry (portion)

Existing

Five Mile (portion)

Existing

Bald Mountain

Y-T/D

3

Very High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

3N73 (portion)

Y-D

3

Very High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

4N15

N

3

Very High

Yes

4 – Low

Medium

Grant Ridge (portion)
Mt. Elizabeth (portion)

Y-T

3

High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

South Fork

Y-T

3

Very High/High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

South Fork #1

Y-T

3

High

No

3 – Medium

Medium

Five Mile (portion)

Y-D

3

High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

Strawberry (portion)

Y-T

3

Very High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

Long Barn

Y-D

3

High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

Middle Fork

N

3

Very High

Yes

4 – Low

High

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
Sampson Fuels Reduction

Y-T/D

3

High

Yes

2005

Medium

South Fork

Y-T

3

Very High

No

3 – Medium

Medium

Lyons Creek

Y-D

3

Very High

No

3 – Medium

Medium

SPI Planned Projects

Y-T/D

3

Very High

Yes

2005

Medium

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-T/D

3

Very High

Yes

2005

Medium

 

FS ZONE – MT. KNIGHT
List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Stanislaus

Existing

American Camp

Existing

Grant Ridge (portion)

Existing

Strawberry (portion)

Existing

Middle Fork

N

3

Very High

Yes

4 – Low

High

Wisehart

N

2

High

Yes

4 – Low

High

Middle Fork #2

Y-T

2

High

Yes

3 – Medium

High

Star Ridge

Y-T

2

Very High/High

Yes

3 – Medium

High

Contention

Y-T

2

High/Med

No

3 – Medium

Medium

Noonday

Y-T

2

High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

Grant Ridge (portion)

N

3

High

Yes

4 – Low

Medium

Strawberry (portion)

Y-T

3

Very High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

French Camp

Y-C/T/D

2

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

Mt. Elizabeth (portion)

Y-T

3

High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

3N73 (portion)

Y-D

3

Very High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

4N15

N

3

Very High

Yes

4 – Low

Medium

South Fork #1

Y-T

3

High

No

3 – Medium

Medium

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
Sampson Fuels Reduction

Y-T/D

3

High

Yes

2005

Low

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-T/D

3

High

Yes

2005

Medium

 

CDF ZONE 5-A (COLUMBIA)

List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Norwegian Gulch

Existing

Parrots Ferry Fuelbreak

Existing

Marble Quarry

Y-C/D

2

High

Yes

2 – High

Low

Cattle Drive Trail

Y-C/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

Horseshoe

Y-T

2

Very High

No

3 – Medium

Low

Bennett Ranch/SpringfieldEstates (portion)

Y-C/D

2

High/Very High

Yes

2 – High

Low

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-C/D/T

2

Very High

Yes

2005

Low

 

CDF ZONE 5-B (SONORA/YANKEE HILL/BIG HILL)
List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Five Mile (portion)

Existing

Old Oak Ranch/Clovis USD (portion)

Y-C/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

Yankee Hill/Big Hill

Y-C/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

Five Mile (portion)

Y-C/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

Cattle Drive Trail

Y-C/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

French Camp

Y-C/T/D

2

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-C/D

3

Very High

Yes

2005

Medium

 

CDF ZONE 5-C (PHOENIX LAKE)
List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
No projects identified
VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-C/D/T

3

Very High

Yes

2005

Medium

 

CDF ZONE 5-D (TWAIN HARTE/CEDAR RIDGE)
List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Cedar Ridge

Y-C/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

Old Oak Ranch/Clovis USD (portion)

Y-C/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
Regional Learning Center FuelsReduction (Clovis USD)

Y-C/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-C/D/T

3

Very High

Yes

2005

Medium

 

CDF ZONE 5-E (MI_WUK VILLAGE/HIGHWAY 108 EAST/TUOLUMNE ROAD NORTH)
List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Skyline

Existing

Hacienda

Existing

Rancheria

Existing

Mi-Wuk/HWY108

Y-C/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Medium

Provo (portion)

Y-C/D

2

High/Very High

Yes

2 – High

Low

Greater Tuolumne City

Y-C/T/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Low

Long Barn

Y-D

3

High

Yes

3 – Medium

Medium

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
D51 Roadside Brush

N

1

Very High

No

4 – Low

Medium

Mt. Provo Fuel Reduction

Y-T/D

2

Very High

Yes

3 – Medium

Low

Skyline Dr./Turnback Creek CanyonFuel Reduction Project

Y-C/T/D

2

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Low

Greater Tuolumne City

Y-C/T/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Low

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-C/T/D

3

Very High

Yes

2005

Medium

 

CDF ZONE 5-F (MELONES)
List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Peoria Truck (portion)

Existing

Peoria Mountain

Existing

Manzanita

Y-T

2

Very High

N

3 – Medium

Low

Heron Gulch

Y-T

2

Very High

N

3 – Medium

Low

Peoria Truck (portion)

N

2

High

Y

4 – Low

Low

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-T

2

Very High

Y

2005

Low

 

CDF ZONE 5-G (MONTEZUMA/HOG MOUNTAIN)

List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Richards

Y-T

2

High

No

3 – Medium

Low

Hog Mountain

Y-T

2

High

Yes

3 – Medium

Low

Slate Creek Control Line

N

2

High/Med

No

4 – Low

Low

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-T

2

High

Yes

2005

Low

 

CDF ZONE 5-H (JAMESTOWN/WARDS FERRY)

List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
No projects identified
VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-C/D/T

2

High

Yes

2005

Low

 

CDF ZONE 5-I (STANDARD/TUOLUMNE CITY)
List of Strategic Treatments Needed (Fuelbreaks/Control Lines and Fuel Reduction Projects)

Within WUI1

Condition Class2

Fuel Type Ranking3

Ties To Existing System4

Priority Grouping or Implementation Schedule5

Other

Resources

Or Values at Risk6

FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES
Wards Ferry/Turnback Creek

Existing

Tuolumne City

Y-T

2

Very High/High

Yes

3 – Medium

Low

Baker

Y-C/D/T

2

Medium/High

No

2 – High

Low

Wards Ferry Road Control Line

N

2

High

Yes

4 – Low

Low

Greater Tuolumne City

Y-C/T/D

3

Very High

Yes

1 – Very High

Low

Provo (portion)

Y-C/D

2

High/Very High

Yes

2 – High

Low

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS
PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

Y-C/D/T

2

Very High/High

Yes

2005

Low

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table 4 Definitions

1 Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) zone:

  • Is the proposed project within the WUI? (The WUI is defined as an area where human habitation is mixed with areas of flammable wildland vegetation).
  • Y=Yes; N=No.
  • C=project is within the core. The core is the portion of the interface zone where there is a high density (approximately one structure per 5 acres) of residences, commercial buildings, and administrative sites with facilities.
  • D=project is within the Defense Zone (an inner, ¼-mile wide buffer immediately adjacent to the Core).
  • T=project is within the Threat Zone (an outer, 1 ¼-mile wide buffer adjacent to the defense zone).

2 Condition Class:

  • Condition Class 1 – Fire regime within or near historical range. Risk of keyecosystem component loss is low.
  • Condition Class 2 – Fire regime moderately altered from historical range. Risk of key ecosystem component loss moderate.
  • Condition class 3 – Fire regime significantly altered from historical range. Risk of key ecosystem loss high.

3 Fuel Type/Fire Hazard Ranking:

  • A computer generated classification of the severity of the fuel type/fire hazard based on vegetation, topography, and weather. (See Glossary of Terms for additional information).
    • Very High – dense brush or timber vegetation (contains ladder fuels and closed canopy); steep slopes; predicted fire event control is difficult.
    • High – brush/timber vegetation (some ladder fuels/canopy); moderate slopes; predicted fire event control is moderate.
    • Medium – grass/woodland vegetation component (little to no canopy); little slope or topographic change; predicted fire control easy to moderate unless extreme weather behavior).

4Tie to Existing Defense System:

  • Does the proposed project tie into an existing strategic defense system? Yes or No.

5 Priority Grouping/Rating Definitions:

  • 1 = Very High: Very High Priority Project Group based on the project being located within the WUI (Core), a Condition Class of 3, a Very High or High Hazardous Fuels ranking, and the project connects with an existing defense system or treated area.
  • 2 = High: High Priority Project Group based on the project being located within the WUI (Core), a Condition Class of 2, a Very High or High Hazardous Fuels ranking, and the project may or may not connect to an existing defense system or treated area.
  • 3 = Medium: Medium Priority Project Group based on the project being located within the WUI (defense or threat zone), a Condition Class of 2 or 3, a Very High or High Hazardous Fuels ranking, and the project may or may not tie in to an existing defense system.
  • 4 = Low Priority: Low Priority Project Group based on the project being located outside the WUI (defense or threat), a Condition Class of 2, a High to Moderate Hazardous fuels ranking, and the project may or may not tie in to an existing defense system.

6 Other Resources At Risk:

  • Data from the Central Sierra Watershed Analysis (CSWA) and the Tuolumne County Community Wildfire Protection Plan (TC-CWPP) was used to determine other resource values at risk. This column displays the relative level of risk to other resources as evaluated in Appendix D. The analysis is based on the presence of other values or resources at risk and the individual project location (at the watershed scale). Based on the analysis completed in Appendix D, the following landscape risk values were assigned: Dodge Ridge – Medium; Lyons – Medium; Pinecrest – Medium; Rose Creek – Low; Sand Bar Flat – High; Tuolumne River/Don Pedro – Low.
  • While other resources or values at risk were considered by the Strategic Fire Planning Group, it was not an attribute evaluated for inclusion in setting priority groupings. The Planning Group agreed that treatment priorities needed to be within the communities at risk/wildland urban interface area. As projects are planned further and further out and away from the communities at risk/wildland urban interface area, other resource values come into play as project design elements and implementation efforts are encouraged to protect wildlife, recreation opportunities, clean air and clean water, and other miscellaneous values and resources.

2005/2006 Program of Work

As stated previously, there are many individual fuelbreak, control line and fuels reduction projects that, when tied together, form the Highway 108 strategic fire plan as a whole.

Based on the criteria or attributes displayed in Table 4 above, there are several individual projects that fall into the 1 – Very High and 2 – High priority project category group with planning/implementation efforts needed as soon as funding resources can be secured. When completed, these efforts will extend key anchor points that exist today, providing improved protection to communities and property along the Highway 108 corridor. A more detailed, brief description of the highest priority projects – by planning zone – follow.

All Planning Zones

Public Resources Code (PRC) 4291 Compliance

All California home and property owners bear some responsibility for wildland fire safety and protection. Creating and maintaining defensible space or clearance around your home is critical. Effective January 1, 2005, if you live in a wildland area in California, there are some changes to the defensible space requirement under CA law. PRC 4291 increases the minimum clearance (defensible space) requirement from 30’ to 100’. Within this zone, the following treatments are recommended:

  • Remove all brushy vegetation and grass taller than 18 inches.
  • Prune tree branches up from the ground.
  • Remove all deal limbs, branches, and logs (slash) from ground level.
  • Remove all dead and dying standing trees and limbs.
  • Thin out the forest canopy and clumps of smaller trees underneath larger trees.

FS Zone – Mt. Knight

French Camp Fuelbreak: the French Camp Fuelbreak begins at the American Camp Fuelbreak and road 3N15. It runs to the South to Italian Bar. This fuelbreak was constructed for the Rose II Prescribed Burn project in 1994. There has been no maintenance conducted on the fuelbreak since 1994, potentially minimizing its effectiveness should a wildfire take place. (A portion of this fuelbreak is also located in CDF Zone 5-B (Sonora/Yankee Hill/Big Hill)).

CDF Zone 5-A (Columbia)

Marble Quarry Fuelbreak: Beginning at the intersection of Parrott’s Ferry Road and Marble Quarry Road (38°03.050) and ending at the Blue Mountain Minerals quarry (38°03.957), this fuel break is predominantly native grass and oak woodland along Marble Quarry Rd. There are some scattered sections along the road that contain brush covered pockets. Treatments suggested for this fuel break are to reduce the horizontal and vertical fuels in these brush covered areas.

Cattle Drive Trail Fuelbreak: this project is designed in three phases and involves multiple private landowners. This fuel reduction project is located just south of the South Fork of the Stanislaus River and north of Columbia State Historic Park (38° 03.379/120° 21.906). Phase 1 treatment is approximately 70 acres of private land and 30 acres of public land between Yankee Hill and Italian Bar Roads. Cattle Drive Trail bisects this project and serves as the main access point for firefighting resources accessing a fire. Treatment for Phase 1 is planned as hand work with the use of CDF inmate fire crews piling and burning or chipping on site. Phase 2 extends from Italian Bar Road across Experimental Mine Road west to the Blue Mountain Minerals property boundary. Phase 3 extends from this point to the Blue Mountain Minerals quarry and south on Marble Quarry Road ending at Parrotts Ferry Road in the Gold Springs subdivision (38° 03.029/120° 24.755). An application has been filed through the grant clearinghouse for Phase 1 funding in 2005. (A portion of this fuelbreak is also located in CDF Zone 5-B (Sonora/Yankee Hill/Big Hill)).

Bennett Ranch/Springfield Estates Fuelbreak: approximately 3 miles in length, this fuel break begins on Parrotts Ferry Road near the Densmore Mine (38° 03.183/120° 26.169). The fuel break follows southeast along a lateral ridge onto a historical grassland fuel type through Springfield Estates (old Bennett Ranch) terminating on Horseshoe Bend Road at the intersection to the former Goodwin Ranch at the head of Chili Gulch (38° 01.463/120° 26.204). There is a need to reduce vertical and horizontal continuity of fuels from Parrotts Ferry Road to the top of the hill where an old dirt road ends in Section 9 (38° 02.979/120° 25.698).

CDF Zone 5-B (Sonora/Yankee Hill/Big Hill)

Old Oak Ranch/Clovis USD Fuelbreak: this approximate 3 mile fuelbreak begins at the old Hatler Mill site (38° 02.625/120° 20.524) and follows Forest Road 2N01 along the main ridge top towards Old Oak Ranch and the Regional Learning Center. The fuelbreak terminates at the property boundary between the USFS and Clovis Unified School District on Forest Road 2N01 (38° 02.974/120° 17.595). Treatment objectives and goals for this area are to reduce horizontal and vertical brush covered fuels along the ridgetop and around the isolated private residences located along the ridgeline. (A portion of this fuelbreak is also located in CDF Zone 5-D (Twain Harte/Cedar Ridge)).

Yankee Hill/Big Hill Fuelbreak: this 2 mile fuelbreak begins on the prominent ridge at Blewett’s Point on Yankee Hill Road (38° 03.509/120° 22.050) and follows the ridgeline to the southeast terminating at near the intersection of Mountain Boy Mine Road and Big Hill Road near the old Hatler Mill (38° 02.625/120° 20.524). Treatment objectives and goals for this area are to reduce horizontal and vertical brush covered fuels along the ridgetop and around the isolated private residences located off Yankee Hill Road, Mountain Boy Mine Road, and Big Hill Road. The old Hatler Mill site should be considered for a public sheltering site for evacuation purposes.

Five Mile Fuelbreak: the Five Mile Fuelbreak begins in the Cedar Ridge area and extends west along road 3N50, North of Five Mile Creek and South of the Stanislaus River.

Portions of the Five Mile Fuelbreak were constructed during the Creek Fire in 1995, and portions were improved and maintained in 1998, 1999, 2003 and 2004 through dozer brush removal, prescribed burning, shredding and thinning activities. The purpose of the fuelbreak is to assist firefighters and protect the community of Cedar Ridge from fires burning in the South Fork Stanislaus River canyon. (A portion of this fuelbreak is also located in FS Zone – Lyons)).

Regional Learning Center Fuel Reduction Project: this fuel reduction project proposes to treat approximately 15 acres, most of which lies on the neighbors’ property to the south and west sides of the Regional Learning Center. Proposed activity includes thinning of trees less than 9 inches dbh and the manual cutting, piling and burning or chipping of all slash. No merchantable trees will be cut. Herbicide use and/or broadcast burning may be used for out year treatment maintenance.

CDF Zone 5-D (Twain Harte/Cedar Ridge)

Cedar Ridge Fuelbreak: this 4 mile fuelbreak begins on Forest Road 2N01 at the forest boundary with the Clovis Unified School District (38° 04.191/120° 25.592) and continues east along the road for approximately one mile (38° 03.266/120° 15.850) where the fuelbreak leaves the road and continues in a northerly direction until it enters the Cedar Ridge subdivision. The fuelbreak will follow western lots in the subdivision and tie in with the Sampson Fuel Reduction project terminating on southwest predominate ridge that forms the south rim of the Stanislaus River drainage (38° 04.406/120° 15.850). Treatment objectives and goals for this area are to reduce horizontal and vertical brush understory fuels along 2N01 and ridgetops; reduce ladder fuels directly adjacent to the private residences in the lower Cedar Ridge subdivision. The graveled surface of Forest Road 2N01 should be improved and turnouts should be developed where possible to aid in emergency evacuation efforts. (A portion of this fuelbreak is also located in FS Zone – Lyons ).

CDF Zone 5-E (Mi-Wuk Village/Highway 108/Tuolumne Road North)

Mi-Wuk/HWY 108 Fuelbreak: the Mi-Wuk/Highway 108 fuel break is a strategically placed fuel break designed to protect the communities of Confidence, Sugar Pine, Mi-Wuk Village, Sierra Village, High Sierra Park, and Long Barn. The fuel break originates in the Mt. Provo area, parallels highway 108 adjacent to the communities mentioned above, and ends east of the community of Long Barn. The project includes both private and federal land.

Portions of the fuel break have been completed and maintained over the past 5 years. The community of Mi-Wuk Village received a grant to complete a portion of the fuelbreak. Beginning just west of Sugar Pine Creek near the end of Wakalu Trail (38° 03.290/120° 10.742), the fuelbreak follows the canyon rim of the north fork of the Tuolumne River through seven private parcels terminating approximately ¼ mile southeast of Confidence (38° 02.528/120° 11.658). This fuelbreak was completed in 2003 and is now in maintenance status. Treatment goals and objectives for this fuelbreak are to maintain the area to reduce horizontal and vertical arrangement of the understory fuels along the 1.5 mile piece.

The Forest Service completed portions of the fuelbreak adjacent to Mi-Wuk Village and the Mt. Provo area. The community of High Sierra Park constructed a portion of the fuelbreak that runs through a portion of the private land. The Forest Service is developing a project designed to connect the completed portions of the fuel break with various fuel reduction treatments.

Provo Fuelbreak: the Provo Fuelbreak begins at the top of the Hacienda Fuelbreak and runs West along road 2N09 over Mt. Provo to the intersection of 2N09 and Mt. Provo Road. This was the one of the control lines used in the Cotton Fire in 1990. Portions of the existing control line will be reconstructed as part of the South 108 Project, resulting in a fuelbreak. The purpose of the fuelbreak is to assist in protecting the communities of Confidence and Sugar Pine from fires burning in the North Fork of the Tuolumne River canyon. (A portion of this fuelbreak is also located in CDF Zone 5-I (Standard/Tuolumne City)).

Greater Tuolumne City Fuelbreak and Fuel Reduction Project: this fuelbreak and fuel modification project is critical to connecting the proposed Mt. Provo fuelbreak to the north and the Tuolumne City fuelbreak to the north. Completed projects will help to protect homes in and around the Ponderosa Hills, Mira Monte, and Tuolumne City areas.

Skyline Dr./Turnback Creek Canyon Fuel Reduction: this fuel modification project began as a demonstration project in 2004. The project is located between the MeWuk Indian Reservation off North Tuolumne Road north of Tuolumne City and the Ponderosa Hills Subdivision. In 2004, the Highway 108 Firesafe Council was awarded $24,000 to reduce brush covered lots and home sites along Skyline Drive in Ponderosa Hills as recommended by CDF fire suppression staff. The Highway 108 Firesafe Council has submitted for grant funding to continue work into the Turnback Creek drainage to reduce fuels on 89 acres of combined public and private property. This fuel reduction project will directly protect approximately 400 homes in the area.

CDF Zone 5-I (Standard/Tuolumne City)

Baker Fuelbreak: This 6.5 mile fuelbreak begins at the intersection of Apple Colony and Mt. Eaton Roads (37° 57.257/120° 14.019) and follows Apple Colony Road to the old Sudal Ranch. The fuelbreak continues southwest along a prominent knifeback ridge terminating at the confluence of Turnback Creek and the Tuolumne River (37° 53.296/120° 16.309). This fuelbreak is predominantly a native grassland fuel type with scattered brush covered segments along the ridgetop features directly east of Apple Colony Road. Treatment objectives and goals are to reduce horizontal and vertical fuel continuity in the brush covered areas connecting the historical native grassland fuel type.

Additional Project Needs on Private Lands

On an ongoing basis and as projects are implemented, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Group will assess the fuelbreak, control line and large fuels reduction projects occurring on State, Federal and SPI lands. This assessment will focus on private land parcels within the project areas where federal or cooperator project planning and implementation might leave “key” parcels of privately owned land untreated. Some type of action or treatment may be needed in these key areas to “connect” the fuel reduction efforts on agency/cooperator lands. For example, the following three projects have been identified to date:

  • Mi-Wuk/HWY108 Area: strategic defense systems in this area will be implemented through continued work on the Mi-Wuk/HWY 108 Fuelbreak and the South 108 Fuels Reduction Project. To maximize the success of the system should a wildfire come up from the canyon below, approximately 80 acres of private land must also be treated. This parcel is located in Section 1, T2N, R16E, and is as shown on Map A-9.9.
  •  Mt. Provo Area: strategic defense systems in this area will be implemented through continued development of proposed fuelbreaks and the Mt. Provo Fuel Reduction Project. Additional treatment is needed throughout the Mt. Provo subdivision. These parcels are located in Section 22, T2N, R16E, and is as shown on Map A-9.9.
  •  Mt. Knight Area: the Stanislaus River Fuelbreak begins at Forebay on the Middle Fork of the Stanislaus River and extends northeast to the community of Mt. Knight. Most of the fuelbreak is located on National Forest System lands with a small portion on private land. The private land is located in Sections 34 and 35, T4N, R15E, and is shown on Map A-9.4. The private landowners are actively pursuing grants and have developed prescriptions to complete the portion of the fuelbreak on their property. The fuelbreak was improved in 1993 as a control line for the Stanislaus River Prescribed Underburn and again in 2001 as a contingency line during the Darby Wild Fire. Areas of the fuelbreak are in various stages of maintenance. Future projects are planned to complete and maintain the entire fuelbreak system.

Once the assessment is complete and strategic links identified, resulting projects will be added to the list of projects needed to put the entire strategic plan in place. The Highway 108 Fire Safe Council can play a key role in working with private landowners to complete planning and secure resources to treat ‘key’ parcels privately owned land in order to connect the strategic defense systems. These efforts will be tracked as part of the overall annual program of work development and accomplishment reporting as shown in Appendix F.

Conclusion

Wildfires will continue to be a natural occurrence in the Sierra Nevada’s. Through strategic planning and a cooperative effort, fire associated problems and the loss of resources can be minimized.

This Strategic Plan is a living document. It will provide guidance to the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group and the Highway 108 Fire Safe Council as these dedicated leaders plan their annual program of work and celebrate their accomplishments each year. By working together, strategic fire defense systems placed across the landscape and across jurisdictional boundaries will provide increased fire protection for natural resources, life and property within the Highway 108 corridor in Tuolumne County.

List of Preparers

 Beth Martinez
Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Coordinator/Writer-Editor, U.S. Forest Service, Stanislaus National Forest, Mi-Wok Ranger District

Robert Laeng
District Resource Protection Officer, U.S. Forest Service, Stanislaus National Forest, Mi-Wok Ranger District

Tim Adamiak
Fuels Management Technician, U.S. Forest Service, Stanislaus National Forest, Mi-Wok Ranger District

Jon Payne
District Resource Protection Officer, U.S. Forest Service, Stanislaus National Forest, Summit Ranger District

Jerry McGowan
Assistant Fire Management Officer, U.S. Forest Service, Stanislaus National Forest

Lynn Goolsby
Geographic Information Systems Coordinator, U.S. Forest Service, Stanislaus National Forest

Barry Rudolph
Battalion Chief, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, Tuolumne Calaveras Unit, Sonora, CA

Mike Noonan
Assistant County Fire Warden, Tuolumne County Fire Department, Sonora, CA

Dan Holsapple
Resource Specialist, U.S.D.I, Bureau of Reclamation, New Melones Lake

John Romena
Forester, Sierra Pacific Industries, Standard, CA

Rich Strazzo
Fire Captain – Pre-Fire Engineer, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, Tuolumne Calaveras Unit, San Andreas, CA

Vicki Biggs
Natural Resource Technician. Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians, Tuolumne, CA

Ken Hood
Fire Management Officer, Bureau of Land Management, Folsom, CA

Glossary of Terms

Biomass Treatments – silvicultural treatments aimed at small diameter (8” or less) wood products that generally cannot be used to produce commercial sawlogs.

Community at Risk – the August 17, 2001 Federal Register publication identifying communities at risk was used. Communities at risk are defined as wildland urban interface residential communities at high risk from wildfire. The protection of life and property within these communities is critical.

Condition Class – a categorization of the current condition with respect to each of the historic Fire Regime Groups. (Features of each condition class are defined through a qualitative description of the current state of fire key ecosystem attributes: disturbance regime; effects of disturbance agents; potential production if smoke emissions; hydrologic function; and vegetative composition, structure, and resilience). In general, a higher condition class ranking indicates a larger departure from historic conditions and requires more intensive fuel treatments to restore the historic conditions. In addition, a higher condition class ranking indicates a much higher risk of losing key ecosystem components when a wildfire occurs.

Control lines – mapped linear features where a fuelbreak is desired but does not yet exist. Control lines are located in areas where, if a fire breaks out, a fire control line can be established quickly due to gentle terrain and favorable vegetation types such as annual grasslands.

CSWA – Central Stanislaus Watershed Analysis, August 2002. CSWA is a large-scale ecosystem analysis document that provides recommendations to help guide future resource management in the center portion of the Stanislaus National Forest. CSWA addresses the biological, physical, and social-cultural dimensions of the ecosystem across approximately 300,000 acres. As it relates to fire management, CSWA contained a very detailed fire assessment process that considered condition class, fire risk, fire hazard (FlamMap computer program modeling) and crown fire potential.

Defensible Fire Profile Zone (DFPZ) – DFPZs are strategically located strips of land where the vegetation has been modified to a less dense fuel type. DFPZs are generally located along ridgetops and roads; these are areas where fire fighters would make a stand to contain a fire. The width of the DFPZ is based on the potential fire behavior, which is based on available fuels, weather and wind, and topography. The DFPZs are not designed to stop an oncoming wildfire by themselves, but rather to provide a safe location to facilitate fire suppression efforts and provide an anchor point for prescribed burning projects.

Fuel Ranking/Fire Hazard – a measure of the potential fire behavior characteristics of an area based on fuel (vegetation) conditions, topography, and weather. Computer modeling is used by both State and Federal Agencies to develop a fuel ranking/fire hazard ratings that are defined, in general, by volume, type, condition, arrangement and location of vegetation, topography, weather, and a difficulty of fire control measure. While the Agencies use different computer modeling, both the parameters built in and the ranking classifications generated are similar. (CDF: a ranking of the fuel type/fire hazard based on vegetation type vegetation (grass, woodland, brush/hardwood , brush and timber), topography and slope, fuel ladder, crown closure component and a difficulty of fire control rating. (Source document: Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP), Tuolumne County, December 2004. USFS: A ranking of the fuel type/fire hazard based on vegetation, slope, aspect, elevation, crown characteristics, fuel moistures, and weather. (Source document: Central Stanislaus Watershed Analysis (CSWA, April 2002)).

Fire Management Unit (FMU) – the Stanislaus National Forest identifies three Fire Management Units to address the fire management objectives in the Forest Plan:

  • FMU #1 – Protection: The fire management goal in FMU #1 is the protection of life and property. The management objective is to enhance fire suppression capabilities by modifying fire behavior inside the unit and to provide a safe and effective area for possible future fire suppression activities. The primary strategies to achieve this objective include a suppression response to all wildland fires and intensive hazard fuels reduction treatments.
  • FMU#1 – Prescribed fire is applied to enhance fire-fighting capability in strategic areas and provide a buffer around communities. The priorities for prescribed fire treatment in FMU#1 are areas where mechanical treatments is prohibited, defensible fuel profile zones (DFPZ) and areas in condition class 2.
  • FMU #2 – Low Elevation: The fire management in FMU #2 is to gradually restore conditions approximating the historic fire regime and to lower the potential for large, uncharacteristically severe wildfire. The primary strategies to achieve this objective include a combination of strategically placed fuel treatments and appropriate management response to wildland fire. As hazard fuel reduction treatments restore more natural conditions, a greater number of naturally occurring fires have the potential to be managed for resource benefits.
  • FMU#2 – prescribed fire is used on a relatively large scale to lower or maintain fuel profiles to reduce the damaging effects of fire. The priorities for prescribed fire treatments in this FMU are maintenance of previously treated areas, high hazard areas in condition class 2, and as a follow-up entry to mechanical treatment in condition class 3 areas.
  • FMU #3 – High Elevation: the fire management objective in this FMU is to maintain the characteristics and components of the historic fire regime. The primary strategies to achieve this objective are wildland fire use and selected hazard fuel reduction treatments where necessary.
  • FMU#3 – prescribed fire is used with wildland fire use primarily to maintain condition class 1 areas and to reduce fuel profiles in areas of condition class 2.
  • FMU #4 – Wilderness: The fire management objective in this FMU is to maintain the characteristics and components of the historic fire regime by allowing fire to play its natural role in the ecosystem.

Fire Risk – a measure of the relative probability of a fire occurring in a particular area based on where fires have occurred in the past.

Five Year Vegetation Treatment Management Plan – an ongoing planning effort on the Stanislaus National Forest. The resulting effort will be an interdisciplinary, integrated 5-year vegetation treatment plan for the Stanislaus National Forest. See Appendix G for additional information.

Fuelbreak – a system of linear or mosaic patch treatments of forest or shrub vegetation designed and treated to reduce fire spread and intensity and to create barriers to fire spread. Actual fuelbreak prescriptions will vary depending on topography but in general, fuelbreaks average 300 feet in width, are free of snags, and both live and dead fuels have been extensively modified removing enough trees to achieve a spacing that would result in maximum effectiveness of aerial retardant application. Existing fuelbreaks are currently in place and in a condition (maintained) so as to be able to use them for the designed purpose. Planned fuelbreaks are mapped fuelbreaks that have been identified as being a necessary part of the strategic fire defense system. These fuelbreaks have not yet been ground-truthed or tied to an exact location on-the-ground.

Fuels – plants and woody vegetation, both living and dead, that is capable of burning.

Grazing – removal of unwanted vegetation through browsing by animals (typically goats and cattle).

Healthy Forest Initiative – the Healthy Forests Initiative (HFI) helped agencies tackle the process gridlock impeding land restoration objectives, including the treatment of hazardous fuels. The HFI resulted in the development of a number of administrative tools and included a call for congressional help to further reduce procedural barriers. The result was the passage of the Healthy Forests Restoration Act of 2003.

Healthy Forests Restoration Act – passed in December 2003, the Healthy Forests Restoration Act (HFRA) sent a strong message of support for reducing fuels and restoring forest health, especially in the wildland/urban interface. Within the HFI, the HFRA helps to streamline some of our processes and get more work done on the ground that will ultimately restore and maintain our fire-adapted ecosystems.

Highway 108 Fire Safe Council – established in 2002, the HWY 108 Fire Safe council is made up of fire protection agencies and community members. The Fire Safe Council strives to fulfill its mission of preserving California’s natural and manmade resources by mobilizing all California residents to make their homes, neighborhoods, and communities fire safe.

Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group – a group made up of various agency fire personnel and cooperators (large private landowners), working together to look at ways to make the Highway 108 corridor more fire safe. The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group is cooperatively planning and implementing a strategic fire defense system designed to reduce the threat of loss of life, property, and resources along Highway 108 in the Tuolumne County wildland urban interface zone.

Mastication – grinding or crushing of unwanted vegetation, typically brush and small diameter material.

National Fire Plan – the National Fire Plan (NFP) was developed in August 2000, following a landmark wildland fire season. The intent of the NFP was to actively respond to severe wildland fires and their impacts to communities while ensuring sufficient firefighting capacity for the future. The NFP addresses five key points: Firefighting, Rehabilitation, Hazardous Fuels Reduction, Community Assistance, and Accountability.

Public Resources Code 4291 – effective January 1, 2005, if you live in a wildland area in California, there are some changes to the defensible space requirement under California law. Governor Schwarzenegger signed into law on September 23, 2004, Senate Bill 1369. This bill amended both Public Resources Code (PCR) 4291 and Government Code (GC) 551182 in the following manner:

  • Increase the minimum clearance (defensible space) requirement from 30’ to 100’.
  • Defensible Space is Your Responsibility – 100’ (Publication)
  • Provide for state law, or local ordinance, rule or regulation to specify requirements of greater than 100’.
  • Allows insurance companies to require home/building owners to maintain firebreaks greater than 100’.

Prescribed Fire – a management tool used to manage natural and activity fuels for the establishment of fuel profiles that contribute to cost-effective fire suppression, aid in meeting resource management objectives and sustain ecosystem values.

Shredding – the mastication of brush, small trees, and woody debris lying on the ground.

Thinning – mechanical treatment of timber stands to: 1) reduce crowding among trees; 2) remove tress to significantly minimize the risk of destructive wildfires, especially the spread of crown fires in forest canopies; 3) attain a more desirable species composition; or 4) accelerate growth of remaining trees.

Wildland Fire – any fire that occurs on wildlands that is not a prescribed fire.

Wildland Fire Risk – the probability of a fire occurring.

Wildland Fire Threat – the potential fire behavior and related fire effects (rate of spread, fire intensity, tree mortality, structure loss, etc.) due to the interactions of fuels, weather and topography.

Wildland Urban Interface Zone – an area where human habitation is mixed with areas of flammable wildland vegetation. It extends out from the edge of developed private land into Federal, private, and State jurisdiction. The wildland urban interface zone extends 1 ½ miles out from the core area (area that has residences, commercial buildings, or administrative sites with facilities at a ratio of at least 1 structure per every 5 acres). It is comprised of two zones: an inner ¼-mile wide buffer (the defense zone) and an outer 1 ¼-mile wide buffer (the threat zone). The actual boundaries of the wildland urban interface zone are determined locally, based on the actual distribution of structures and communities adjacent to or interfaced with national forest lands. Strategic landscape features, such as roads, changes in fuel types and topography are used in delineating the physical boundary of the wildland urban interface zone.

Fuel reduction treatments are designed to protect human communities from wildand fires as well as minimize the spread of fires that might originate in urban areas. The management objective in the wildland urban interface zone is to enhance fire suppression capabilities by modifying fire behavior inside the zone and providing a safe and effective area for possible future fire suppression activities.

Appendices

 Appendix A – Project Maps

Appendix B – Memorandum of Understanding

Appendix C – Communication Plan

Appendix D – Resource Values at Risk

Appendix E – Summary of Available Funding Sources

Appendix F – Annual Accomplishment Report/Program of Work Development Document

Appendix G – NEPA/CEQA Guidance

Appendix H – Project Prioritization Methods

Appendix I – Photo Gallery of Sample Projects/Treatments, Before and After

Appendix J – Tuolumne County Board of Supervisor’s Resolution

Appendix A – Project Maps

  • Map A-1: Recorded Fire History Within Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project Area
  • Map A-2: Project Vicinity Map
  • Map A-3: Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project Area
  • Map A-4: Communities at Risk
  • Map A-5: Land Ownership Patterns
  • Map A-6: Condition Class
  • Map A-7: Existing Fuelbreaks
  • Map A-8: Past Fuels Reduction Projects
  • Map A-9: Geographical Planning Zones
    • Map A-9.1 – Strategic Defense Systems for Pinecrest/Strawberry Zone
    • Map A-9.2 – Strategic Defense Systems for South Highway 108 Zone
    • Map A-9.3 – Strategic Defense Systems for Lyons Zone
    • Map A-9.4 – Strategic Defense Systems for Mt. Knight Zone
    • Map A-9.5 – Strategic Defense Systems for Zone 5-A (Columbia)
    • Map A-9.6 – Strategic Defense Systems for Zone 5-B (Sonora/Yankee/Big Hill)
    • Map A-9.7 – Strategic Defense Systems for Zone 5-C (Phoenix Lake)
    • Map A-9.8 – Strategic Defense Systems for Zone 5-D (Twain Harte/Cedar Ridge)
    • Map A-9.9 – Strategic Defense Systems for Zone 5-E (Mi-Wuk Village/Highway 108 East/Tuolumne Road North)
    • Map A-9.10 – Strategic Defense Systems for Zone 5-F (Melones)
    • Map A-9.11 – Strategic Defense Systems for Zone 5-G (Montezuma/Hog Mountain)
    • Map A-9.12 – Strategic Defense Systems for Zone 5-H (Jamestown/Wards Ferry)
    • Map A-9.13 – Strategic Defense Systems for Zone 5-I (Standard/Tuolumne City)
  • Map A-10: Planned Fuelbreaks/Control Lines for the Project Area
  • Map A-11: Planned Fuels Reduction Projects for the Project Area
  • Map A-12: Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Strategic Fire Defense System for the Project Area

Appendix B – Memorandum of Understanding

Memorandum of Understanding

between

USDA Forest Service and Tuolumne County and
California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and [UFS4]
the United States Bureau of Reclamation and the United States
Bureau of Land Management and Sierra Pacific Industries
and the Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians

[UFS5]

This Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is hereby entered into by and between the USDA Forest Service, Stanislaus National Forest[UFS6] , hereinafter referred to as the USFS, the County of Tuolumne, a political subdivision of the State of California, d.b.a. as the[s7] Tuolumne County Fire Department [UFS8], hereinafter referred to as TCFD, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection for the Tuolumne Calaveras Unit hereinafter referred to as CDF TCU, the United States Bureau of Reclamation hereinafter referred to as USBR, the United States Bureau of Land Management hereinafter referred to as the BLM, Sierra Pacific Industries hereinafter referred to as SPI, and the Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians, hereinafter referred to as the Me-Wuk. [UFS9]

A. Purpose [UFS10] :

The purpose of this Memorandum of Understanding is to bring County, State and Federal Fire Protection Agencies and large private landowners (cooperators) together in an effort to mitigate wildfire problems in an area of significant catastrophic, large wildfire occurrence. This interagency/cooperator team will analyze the “total fire environment” within an area described as the Highway 108 Corridor. A process called the Strategic Fire and Resource Protection Planning will be the basis of planning effort. The process recognizes that wildfire does not respect political boundaries. The fundamental aim is resource protection, whether those are natural resources or private property. As a result of this multi-agency/cooperator coordination in all aspects of wildfire, strategic implementation actions will be developed to improve wildfire protection in the planning area.

B. Statement of Mutual Benefit and Interests [UFS11] :

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan project area consists of approximately 235,470 acres of mixed private and public lands that have a significant history of large and damaging wildfires. County, State, Federal agencies and cooperators have both fire protection and management responsibilities within the project area. It is of great benefit that all of these agencies work together in efforts to minimize the impacts of the catastrophic wildfire problem that has existed over time, is apparent today, and is expected to continue into the future. The goal of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan is to design and implement wildfire defense systems and mitigations for the protection of these lands, regardless of political boundaries. All levels of local Government, private landowners, business people, the traveling public, and elected officials in the area have a great deal of interest in having adequate levels of wildfire protection for the area. This project is designed with the primary objective to attempt to reduce the potential loss of life, property, and resources in the project area utilizing an interagency/cooperator approach.

C. Agency Responsibilities [UFS12] :

  1. Each agency/cooperator will designate a person to represent their respective agency. Each agency/cooperator will be represented at coordination meetings.
  2. The agencies/cooperator agree to share any information required to meet the goals and objectives of the project. All data will be available to all agencies/cooperator at any time. To analyze the “total” wildfire environment, data is primarily available in GIS (Arc View).
  1. All media contacts will identify the interagency/cooperator approach to the planning effort and each agency/cooperator will be identified in any contact as participants. A communication plan will be developed and approved by all agencies/cooperator.

D. It Is Mutually Agreed and Understood by All Parties that:

  1. Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) [UFS13] . Any information furnished to the Forest Service under this instrument is subject to the Freedom of Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552).
  2. Participation in Similar Activities [UFS14] . This instrument in no way restricts the Forest Service or the Agencies or Cooperator(s) from participating in similar activities with other public or private agencies, organizations, and individuals.
  3. Commencement/Expiration/Termination [UFS15] . This MOU takes effect upon the signatures of the USFS, TCFD, CDF TCU, USBR, BLM, SPI, and Me-Wuk and shall remain in effect for a time period of five years from the date of execution. This MOU may be extended or amended upon written request of any party (USFS, TCFD, CDF TCU, USBR, BLM, SPI or Me-Wuk) and the subsequent written concurrence of the other(s). Either the USFS or TCFD or CDF TCU or the USBR or the BLM or SPI or the Me-Wuk may terminate this MOU with a 60-day written notice to the other(s).
  4. Responsibilities of Parties. The USFS, TCFD, CDF TCU, USBR, BLM, SPI and the Me-Wuk and their respective agencies and offices will handle their own activities and utilize their own resources, including the expenditure of their own funds, in pursuing these objectives. Each party will carry out its separate activities in a coordinated and mutually beneficial manner.
  5. Principal Contact [UFS16] . The principal contacts for this instrument are:

Forest Service Project Contact

USBR Project Contact

Jerry McGowan, Asst. Fire Mgmt. Off. Dan Holsapple, Resource Specialist
19777 Greenley Road New Melones Lake
Sonora, CA 95370 6850 Studhorse Flat Rd.
Sonora, CA 95370
Phone: 209 532-3671 ext. 210 Phone: 209 536-9094
E-Mail: jmcgowan@fs.fed.us E-Mail: dholsapple@mp.usbr.gov

TCFD Project Contact

SPI Project Contact

Mike Noonan John Romena, Forester
2 South Forest Road 14560 Tuolumne Road
Sonora, CA 95370 Sonora, CA 95370
Phone: 209 533-5548 Phone: 209 532-7141
E-Mail: mike.noonan@fire.ca.gov E-Mail: jromena@spi.ind.com

CDF TCU Project Contact

Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk

Project Contact

Barry Rudolph, Battalion Chief Vicki Biggs
2 South Forest Road P.O. Box 699
Sonora, CA 95370 Tuolumne City, CA 95379
Phone: 209 532-7424 Phone: 209 928-3475
E-Mail: barry.rudolph@fire.ca.gov E-Mail: trees@mlode.com

BLM Project Contact

Ken Hood
63 Natomas St.
Folsom, CA 95630
Phone: 916-985-4474
E-Mail: khood@ca.blm.gov

 

6. Non-Fund Obligating Document:[UFS17] Nothing in this MOU shall obligate either the USFS, TCFD, CDF TCU, USBR, BLM, SPI or the Me-Wuk to obligate or transfer any funds. Specific work projects or activities that involve the transfer of funds, services, or property among the various agencies and offices of the USFS, TCFD, CDF TCU, USBR, BLM, SPI or the Me-Wuk will require execution of separate agreements and be contingent upon the availability of appropriated funds. Such activities must be independently authorized by appropriate statutory authority. This MOU does not provide such authority. Negotiation, execution, and administration of each such agreement must comply with all applicable statues and regulations.

7. Establishment of Responsibility. This MOU is not intended to, and does not create, any right, benefit, or trust responsibility, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or equity, by a party against the United States, its agencies, its officers, or any person.

The Parties Hereto have executed this instrument

[UFS18] USDA Forest Service United States Bureau of Reclamation

[UFS19]

____________________________________ ______________________________

Tom Quinn

Date

Mike Finnigan

Date

Forest Supervisor [UFS20] Area Manager [UFS21]

Tuolumne County Fire Dept. Sierra Pacific Industries

_____________________________________ ______________________________

Mike Noonan

Date

Dave Baker

Date

Assistant County Fire Warden District Manager

County of Tuolumne

Approved as to Risk Management Form:

_____________________________________

Eric Larson

Date

Risk Manager [s22]

County of Tuolumne

Approved as to Legal Form:

_____________________________________

Gregory Oliver

Date

County Counsel [s23]

CA Dept. of Forestry Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Dept. of Forestry

___________________________________ _____________________________

Fred McVay

Date

Kevin A. Day

Date

Bureau of Land Management

____________________________________

Ken Hood

Date

The authority and format of this instrument has been reviewed and approved for signature [UFS24]

_____________________________________________

Ramona L. Robertson

Date

Contract Specialist/Grants and Agreements Coordinator

Appendix C – Communication Plan

 Goal

The main purpose of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan is the protection of life, property and natural resources. To ensure a wide and diverse range of expertise these governmental agencies, tribal representatives, elected officials, Chambers of Commerce, private landowners, local community residents, local business owners, interested groups and individuals are working together to understand and support the purpose and need for the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan. An analysis has shown this area to have a significant, large fire history.

Objective

Implementation of this communication plan will ensure that the following strategic communication objectives are met:

  • All participating agencies and cooperators are presented equally in a united, interagency team effort.
  • All interested parties receive timely notification of the content, progress, and development of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan and have a meaningful opportunity to participate in the analysis process.
  • All information dissemination to the news media is accurate and informative.

Key Messages

When discussion the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan, team members will stress the following general themes and key points:

  • Wildfire does not respect political boundaries. The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan spans 234,470 acres of interfaceed private and public lands that fall under the authority of county, state, and federal jurisdictions. Ranging in elevation from approximately 1100 to 6500 feet, the project area is generally bound by the Middle Fork of the Stanislaus River to the north; the North Fork of the Tuolumne River to the east/southeast; and Melones Reservoir/the Middle Fork of the Stanislaus River to the west/northwest.
  • Participating Agencies and Cooperators include the following: USDA Forest Service, Stanislaus National Forest, [UFS25] Tuolumne County Fire Department [UFS26] California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection – Tuolumne Calaveras Unit, United States Bureau of Reclamation, Sierra Pacific Industries,[UFS27] Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk, United States Bureau of Land Management.
  • The project is designed to analyze the wild land fire problem in an area of significant large fire history, and to follow a process titled “Strategic Fire and Resource Protection Planning.”
  • The fundamental aim of the project is the protection of life, property, and natural resources. When implemented, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan will strengthen the public and private management policies to improve fire protection. Strategic planning and multi-agency coordination in all aspects of wildfire protection will be an everyday task between agencies and cooperators.
  • Strategic fire and resource protection planning offers an opportunity for public and private planning and development interests to better identify and address environmental protection and restoration from a holistic, landscape analysis perspective.
  • The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan will result in greater effectiveness and efficiencies by reducing the duplication in various individual agency fire planning, integrating fire prevention and protection systems, and getting more done with less.

Communication Plan Agreements

  • Communication methods and their applications will be decided in advance where possible and approved by the inter-agency (all participating agencies and cooperators) team effort with regard to all aspects of this project.
  • All communications by participating agencies and cooperators will follow this Communication Plan, and information provided will focus on the above objectives and key messages.
  • Each agency and cooperator participating in the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project has a designated representative on the “core” group. These representatives have the authority to make decision s on media contact or have a pre-determined chain of command identified to make timely decision on any communication need.
  • The script for all planned (advanced) news releases (paper, radio, TV, etc.), will be approved by all Group members. Whenever possible, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group will make presentations together on legislative tours, before County Boards of Supervisors, to other interested agencies, and during scheduled interviews with the news media.
  • Any impromptu news releases, were time does not allow contact and approval by the whole Group, the focus will be on the multi-agency/cooperator commitment, the Group effort for improved fire protection within the project area, and the above key messages.
  • Requests by the media (paper, radio, TV, etc.) for information regarding the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan may come direction to agency officials who are not core Group members. It is up to agency/cooperator representatives of the Group to keep appropriate agency/cooperator officials (agency heads, designated Public Affairs Officers, Information officers, etc.,) briefed about the project (key messages, progress, activities, developments, and strategies).
  • It is preferred that all media contacts be made to agency personnel and referred to the individual agency representatives on the Interagency Group. Along with the referral, agency Public Affairs Officers/Information Officers can provide communication plan information and key messages to the media to avoid no information being provided if the core Group members can not be reached.

If desired, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Planning Group may appoint, on a permanent or rotating basis, one or more Group information officers to coordinate and represent the team to local and regional news media. A Unified Command Information Officer approach can be used if the group approves.

If an Information Officer approach is used, the Information Officer(s) will be responsible for keeping the Communication Plan on track, fairly and equally representing all agencies and cooperators, coordinating media interviews, preparing news releases, keeping core agency and cooperator Group members informed regarding media coverage, preparing background briefs for dignitary presentations, and preparing materials for public meetings. The Information Officer(s) will be responsible for working with the interagency/cooperator group to develop key messages and creative approaches for communication of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan message(s). Other agency information specialists (PAO/PIO) not assigned to the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan effort may provide professional consultation and advertisement to the Information Officer upon request by the interagency/cooperator group. Suggested news media contacts are available within the Highway 108 corridor zone of influence, key agency and government contacts, and suggested news releases formats are also available.

Appendix D – Resource Values at Risk

 Data from the Central Sierra Watershed Analysis (CSWA) and the Tuolumne County Community Wildfire Protection Plan (TCCWPP) was used to determine other resource values at risk. To begin, the six landscapes within the project area were ranked from 1 to 6 based on wildfire hazard. A 1 represents the highest risk for wildfire. Other resource values (wildlife, developed recreation, old growth forest and a miscellaneous category) were then ranked for each landscape, based on the amount or volume of each resource, or, where volume of resource was similar for all, based simply on the presence of the resource. The table below displays the resource values at risk for each landscape and the associated ranking.

Landscape

Name

Wildfire

Risk1

Rank

Wildlife2

Rank

Recreation

Rank

Old Growth Forest

Rank

Miscellaneous

Rank

Dodge Ridge Excessive70% CC 330% CC 2

1

10 PACS (8 w/i high fire hazard)

2

Developed/dispersed recreation use

4

>50% in high fire hazard

1

Experimental Forest

1

Lyons Very High48% CC 352% CC 2

2

16 PACS (14 w/i high or very high fire hazard)

1

Developed/Dispersed recreation use

2

>50% in high fire hazard

1

½ of landscape in WUI

1

Pinecrest Low08% CC 322% CC 270% CC 1

4

2 PACS

3

Developed recreation

1

Outside of Pinecrest

1

Pinecrest summer homes; Dodge Ridge; Emigrant Wilderness; Class I Airshed

1

Rose Creek Very High20% CC 380% CC 2

3

11 PACS (7 w/i high or very high fire hazard)

2

Dispersed recreation

5

>50% in high fire hazard

1

Private land, small clusters of residences throughout

1

Sand Bar Flat Excessive67% CC 333% CC 2

1

14 PACS (all w/I high or very high hazard)

1

Developed/Dispersed recreation

4

>50% in high or very high hazard

1

infrastructure including Beardsley Dam, Camp Mensinger, Spring Gap, Mt. Knight

1

Tuolumne River – Don Pedro Reservoir Low10% CC 360% CC 230% CC 1

4

0 PACS

4

Developed recreation

1

None

0

Community infrastructure; private land

1

1CC – Condition Class
2PACS – Protected Activity Centers

Assessment of Values at Risk: overall values at risk were ranked as Low (0-2 resource values were ranked #1 for that value); Medium (3 resource values were ranked #1 for that value); or High (4 or more resource values were ranked #1 for that value).

The assessment was completed at the watershed scale only. Individual projects within each watershed were given the same Resource Values At Risk assignment as the entire watershed. Watershed level results are as follows:

  • Dodge Ridge – Medium
  • Lyons – Medium
  • Pinecrest – Medium
  • Rose Creek – Low
  • Sand Bar Flat – High
  • Tuolumne River/Don Pedro – Low

 Appendix E – Summary of Available Funding Sources

A variety of funding sources are available to assist individuals and organized groups with fire protection and fuel hazard reduction projects. Some of the most common funding sources are summarized below. As additional funding sources are discovered, summary information will be added to this list. It is not uncommon for funding criteria to include the leveraging of funds through partnerships and cooperators. In addition, individual projects often need to be tied to a community or strategic plan to secure funding. The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan helps meet that need.

Forest Service Funding Opportunities

State and Private Forestry (S&PF) programs play a major role in the implementation of projects developed under the National Fire Plan. It is through the S&PF programs that the Forest Service is able to most directly offer technical and financial assistance to communities impacted by wildland fire and help them to accomplish the mitigation of future fire risks.

To simplify the process of applying for National Fire Plan grants, the California Fire Alliance has created a grants clearinghouse. Under the clearinghouse, eligible organizations can submit one concept paper by one deadline to be considered by multiple agencies for funding. The clearinghouse is staffed by the California Fire Safe Council (FSC) and is located at www.grants.firesafecouncil.org. The deadline for submittal is usually early February. For additional information, contact Stanislaus National Forest Rural Development Coordinator Jayne Montoya at (209) 532-3671, extension 320.

Alliance for a Fire Safe California

The Alliance for a Fire Safe California publishes a Community Resource Guide which provides a brief summary of assistance available from various state and federal agencies to help tribes, communities and other agencies plan and implement community fire protection. The Community Resource Guide is available at www.cafirealliance.org/downloads/resourceguide.pdf

Secure Rural School and Self-Determination Act of 2000/Tuolumne County Resource Advisory Committee

The Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act (PL106-393) was signed into law on October 20, 2000. The Act’s purpose is to stabilize payments to Counties for roads & schools, fund projects that enhance forest ecosystem health, provide employment opportunities, and improve cooperation between the Forest Service and those who care about and use Forest Service lands. About ten percent of the money is set aside each year to fund a wide variety of forest-improvement or maintenance projects on Forest Service lands and on adjacent private land.

The Tuolumne County Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) is a 15-member committee consisting of community representatives from a variety of commodity, user group, and environmental interests. Together, the committee solicits, reviews, and recommends projects to the Secretary of Agriculture for funding. The deadline for the next funding cycle is May 2, 2005. For additional information, contact Mi-Wok District Program Area Leader Beth Martinez at (209) 586-3234, extension 608.

Proposition 40 Funding

California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CDF) has begun implementation of a new fuels reduction program funded by Proposition 40 (Prop 40), the California Clean Water, Clean Air, Safe Neighborhood Parks, and Coastal Protection Act of 2002. The goal of CDF Prop 40 Fuel Reduction Program is to reduce wildland fuel loadings that pose a threat to watershed resources and water quality.

Approximately $1,890,000 is available in Prop 40 funding to be awarded through July 1, 2005, for qualifying fuel treatment projects. An additional $350,000 is available to assist project proponents with the preparation of Community Wildfire Protection Plans and/or analysis of environmental impacts as is necessary to comply with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Any non-Federal organization operating within the covered area may apply for Prop 40 funding. Collaboration with CDF Units and consistency with the Unit Fire Plan is required. Additional information (including project criteria and submission guidelines, can be obtained at http://frap.cdf.ca.gov/projects/prop40/.

Or, within Tuolumne County, contact Steve Hollett, CDF, at (209) 754-2706 or Alan Peters, CDF, at (209) 754-2709.

APPENDIX F – Annual Accomplishment Report/Program of Work Development Document

2005/2006Program of Work
FUELBREAKS/CONTROL LINES

AGENCY JURISDICTION

PLANNED

IMPLEMENTATION

YEAR

ACCOMPLISHMENT YEAR

ACRES/MILES

French Camp

FS

2005/2006

Cattle Drive Trail

CDF

2005 – Phase I

Old Oak Ranch/Clovis USD

CDF

2005/2006

Yankee Hill/Big Hill

CDF

2005/2006

Five Mile

FS

2005/2006

Cedar Ridge

CDF

2005/2006

Mi-Wuk/HWY 108

CDF/FS

2005

Greater Tuolumne City

FS/CDF/BLM/PVT

2005/2006

VEGETATIONTREATMENT/FUELREDUCTION PROJECTS

AGENCY

JURISDICTION

PRC 4291 Defensible SpaceCompliance

PVT

2005 & Ongoing

RLC Fuels Reduction

PVT

2005

Skyline Drive/Turnback CreekFuels Reduction Project

PVT

2005

Greater Tuolumne City

FS/CDF/BLM/PVT

2005/2006

Sampson Fuels Reduction

FS

2005

Beardsley Line DFPZ

FS

2005

Pinecrest Fuel Reduction

FS

2005

Highway 108 CommunityProtection

FS

2005

D53 Roadside Hazard FuelsReduction

FS

2005

D53 Thin

FS

2005

South 108 Fuel Reduction

FS

2005

SPI Planned Projects

FS

2005

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

APPENDIX G – National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)/California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) Guidance

Determining Whether a National Fire Plan project or RAC funded project on private land is Subject to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

 Provided by Jayne Montoya, Forest Grants Coordinator

February 23, 2005

Introduction: Over the past couple of years, a common question that has been asked is whether projects funded through the National Fire Plan(NFP) or Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) need to follow a NEPA &/or CEQA process. Many of these projects occur on private land, but the primary funding source are federal funds. In various application processes, project applicants are asked whether NEPA &/or CEQA has been completed. So far, applications are dealt with on a case-by-case basis in relation to this question. This pattern will likely continue, however, we would like to present a few common facts as a basis for applicants to answer the NEPA/CEQA question.

  1. The Forest Service completed a white paper in August, 2004 that was titled “Determining Whether a Proposal is Subject to The National Environmental Policy Act”. This paper is available on the Washington Office NEPA web page: http://www.fs.fed.us/emc/nepa/. The NEPA process applies to proposed “Federal” actions. A non-Federal activity may be subject to the NEPA process when it requires a permit, regulatory decision, or funding from a Federal agency.
  2. California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) – CEQA is a similar environmental analysis which occurs on private lands throughout the State of California. The California Dept of Forestry (CDF) is the lead agency for completing the CEQA analysis for proposed fuels reduction projects on private land, unless they agree to let another entity handle the request.
  3. A joint CEQA and NEPA document may be completed for a project, which eliminates the need to complete two separate documents. If a NEPA analysis was being completed for a Forest Service project on public land, the agency could include the private land in that same analysis if a fuels reduction project was being proposed in the same area. If this were to happen, there may be a need to submit a project decision to the state clearinghouse.
  4. There may be some exemptions for fuel reduction projects located in subdivisions. An example of this was the Skyline Road Fuel Reduction Project in Ponderosa Hills. Tuolumne County consulted with CDF and found this project to be exempt from environmental review under CEQA. The stipulations of the project included no vegetation manipulation occurring within 50 feet of the centerline of Turnback Creek or the high water line of any pond located along the creek within the project area and no trees larger than 6” dbh were allowed to be cut. This exemption may apply to a project in Tuolumne County and the Tuolumne County Community Development Department would take the lead in this process.
  5. Pine Needle Collection Program – It has been determined that any project that assist homeowners meet the California Fire Code 4291 to reduce hazardous fuels on their property is exempt from CEQA. In this past, the State has required homeowners to remove material to at least 30 feet from structures. Late in 2004, a law was passed that requires homeowners to remove material to at least 100 feet from structures.

The following list of agencies/personnel are the primary contacts for questions related to CEQA/NEPA requirements for any prospective project applicant:

California Dept of Forestry
Attn: Steve Hollett
785 Mountain Ranch Road
San Andreas, CA 95249
(209) 754-2706

Tuolumne County Community Development Department

Attn: Bev Shane
2 South Green Street
Sonora, CA 95370
(209) 533-5633

Stanislaus National Forest – (Contact District Ranger where proposed project is located)

Mi-Wok RD – Ann Denton, (209) 586-3234
Summit RD – Karen Caldwell (209) 965-3434
Groveland RD – John Swanson (209) 962-7825
Calaveras RD – Acting District Ranger, (209) 795-1381

Grant related questions may be referred to Jayne Montoya, Grants Coordinator, Stanislaus N.F., 19777 Greenley Road, Sonora, CA 95370 – (209) 532-3671, Ext. 322.

Appendix H – Ongoing Fire Planning Efforts and Project Implementation Prioritization Methods

 Southwest Interface Team (SWIFT)

Established in 1999, the SouthWest InterFace Team (SWIFT) is a unified, collaborative partnership established to protect the watershed, communities, and residential concentrations from wildfire within a 132,000 acres area in southern Tuolumne and northern Mariposa counties. SWIFT is composed City, County, State and Federal agencies working cooperatively to reduce the wildfire problem. To attain the overall objective of protecting life, property, and resources, SWIFT works aggressively with others such as Fire Safe Councils, Fire Education Corps, local businesses, other agencies and associations, and private residents.

The Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan was completed using a standardized process called the Analysis of the Total Fire Environment, developed by SWIFT. The southwest boundary of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan project area adjoins the SWIFT boundary. By adjoining boundaries and using the same approach, fire planning and mitigation is consistent across larger landscapes.

Within the SWIFT documents, projects are prioritized into broad categories of High, Medium, and Low. No specific explanation of criteria or rankings used to set priorities is contained in the published documents.

Stanislaus National Forest 5 – Year Vegetation Treatment Management Plan

The Stanislaus National Forest 5-Year Vegetation Treatment Management Plan is an ongoing planning effort. Initiated in 2004 through Washington Office (Deputy Chief for State and Private Forestry and the National Forest System) and Regional Office direction, the 5 year Vegetation Treatment Management Plan develops a strategy to outline how the Stanislaus National Forest plans to address the need to create a landscape pattern that lessens the likelihood of large wildfires, while achieving resource-specific objectives such as wildlife enhancement and forest health improvement.

The strategy includes the development of potential treatment areas based on the following: vegetation type, terrain, wildland/urban intermix, risk of forested stands to insects and disease, resources to protect (e.g., plantations, spotted owl protected activity centers, power lines, etc.), opportunities to restore or enhance resources (e.g. aspen stands, meadows) and past treatments. Treatment areas eventually evolve into potential projects.

Once projects are identified, implementation priorities are established using the following criteria: project is multi-funded (more than 1 source of funding), prior investment, risk to communities, condition class, contract possibilities, volume (commercial timber produced), insect mortality risk, other risks, and project planning status (includes National Environmental Policy Act requirements).

The 5-Year Vegetation Treatment Management Plan is expected to be completed in 2005. It is anticipated that all of the fuel reduction projects (on National Forest System lands) within the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan will also be identified within 5-Year Vegetation Treatment Management Plan.

Other National Forest Planning Direction Regarding Fire/Fuels Management used in the development of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan is summarized below.

Strategies and Guidelines For Fire Management Plans (Forest publication 2002) – fire managers will use these strategies for prioritizing projects and will be working towards a landscape analysis over the entire Forest to eventually determine priority areas for treatment:

  • Protect life and property in the wildland urban interface zone
  • Provide for firefighter and public safety
  • Improve Forest health and fire resiliency
  • Reduce fire severity and level of resource damage
  • Adhere to the directions, standards, and guidelines in the LRMP
  • Protect sensitive habitat.

2003 Wildland Urban Interface / Interface – Implementation Direction for Identifying and Prioritizing Hazardous Fuel Reduction (R5 Publication)

  • Focus on zone of highest overall fire occurrence, hazard, and risk (based on ignition data, fire hazard as described by fuel bed characteristics of surface, ladder, and crown), and existing fire type (surface, passive, active crowning)
  • Determine the community’s willingness and readiness to actively participate with fire safe councils and landscape planning to identify likely project areas.
  • For each potential project, determining the willingness and ability of the owner of the land surrounding the community to undertake, and maintain, a complementary project.
  • Fire regime and conditions class considerations influence the actual extent of the defense and threat zone, the prescription attributes for vegetation and the placement of treatments that are needed to achieve desired conditions.

Assign a higher priority to projects with the greatest potential to achieve a proper sequence of treatments. Maintenance of treatments in the WUI, should be identified, prioritized, and scheduled. Areas designed for fire suppression will be maintained so that the safe deployment of fire suppression resources can effectively make use of a full range of suppression options during initial and extended attack.

Tuolumne County Community Wildfire Protection Plan

The Tuolumne County Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP) is a comprehensive plan that combines all the County’s pre-fire components into one document. This Plan includes a description of Tuolumne County; a discussion of the stakeholders, fuels, weather, level of service and assets at risk in the County; Fire Safe Councils’ Plans; Strategic Groups Plans; and a discussion of the institutional issues related to the implementation of the Plan. The Plan also addresses how Agencies are trying to mitigate the wildland fire hazard and ignition problem in Tuolumne County.

The Tuolumne County CWPP was completed in January 2005 and includes all of Tuolumne County. Upon completion of the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan will be added to the Tuolumne County CWPP as an appendix. For a portion of Tuolumne County, the Highway 108 Plan provides more detail as to the desired strategic fire defense systems needed to protect communities and resources.

Tuolumne-Calaveras Unit Pre-Fire Management Plan

The 2003 Tuolumne-Calaveras Unit Pre-Fire Management Plan is the fourth Plan prepared since the inception of the 1996 California Fire Plan. The process of assessing the fuels, weather, level of service and assets at risk were used to prepare the first Plan in 1998, and then the updates to the Plan in 1999 and 2000. The 2003 Pre-Fire Management Plan update is a comprehensive plan that includes: the Tuolumne-Calaveras Unit’s (TCU) concept of the Pre-Fire Management Plan; a current description of TCU; a discussion of the stakeholders, fuels, weather, level of service (LOS) and assets at risk in TCU; the combined Ignition Management Plan (IMP), Fire Management Plan and the Vegetation Management Program (VMP) Plans for the unit; and a discussion of the institutional issues related to implementation of the Unit Pre-Fire Management Plan. The IMP section of the plan discusses the fire occurrence over the past three fire seasons, and the combined plan addresses how Unit staff is trying to mitigate the fire and ignition problem within the Unit.

Appendix I – Photo Gallery of Sample Projects, Before and After

 Hwy. 108 Community Protection Project

Cascade Creek Tract

 

 

Before Treatment After Treatment

 

 

 

Fuel Modification, Before and After

 

 

 

Creating Defensible Space

 

 

 

Mechanical Thinning In Process Mechanical Shredding In Process

 

 

 

Before and After – Shredded Fuelbreak

 

 

 

Roadside Brushing Needed for Adequate Access

Appendix J – Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors Resolution

Filed July 12, 2005_

No. 98-05 By_/s/Alica_Jamar_
Clerk of the Board of Supervisors

Resolution

of the Board of Supervisors of the County of Tuolumne

WHEREAS, the Stanislaus National Forest has experienced a series of catastrophic fires in the last two decades which have consumed thousands of acres; and

WHEREAS, additional devastating fires have ravaged adjoining Federal, State and private lands in many areas of Tuolumne County; and

WHEREAS, when catastrophic fires occur, significant damage is done to timber resources and watersheds, and overall forest health is compromised; and

WHEREAS, catastrophic fires imperil life and property, and cause short and long-term economic impacts; and

WHEREAS, the Stanislaus National Forest has developed a process guide to address these fire concerns, known as Strategic Fire and Resources Protection Planning; and

WHEREAS, a multi-agency, cross-jurisdictional project to implement Strategic Fire and Resource Protection Planning known as the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project has been initiated; and

WHEREAS, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project is comprised of representatives from the Bureau of Land Management, the Stanislaus National Forest, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, the United States Bureau of Reclamation, the Tuolumne County Fire Department, Sierra Pacific Industries, and the Me-Wuk Indian Tribe; and

WHEREAS, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project has designated an area of approximately 235,500 acres generally bound by the Middle Fork of the Stanislaus River to the north; the North Fork of the Tuolumne River to the east/southeast; and New Melones Reservoir/the Middle Fork of the Stanislaus river to the west/northwest; to undertake a Federal, State and Local Government cooperative and collaborative effort to implement an integrated and comprehensive project to mitigate fire loss potentials on Federal, State and private lands; and

WHEREAS, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project will seek to incorporate all stakeholders, public and private in this effort; and

WHEREAS, the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project will seek to provide direction to the Highway 108 Fire Safe Council for project priorities; and

WHEREAS, the completed Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan will become an Appendix to the Tuolumne County Community Wildfire Protection Plan.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors endorses the Highway 108 Strategic Fire Plan Project.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors affirms its support for the Memorandum of Understanding that has been executed between the Tuolumne County Fire Department and the Stanislaus National Forest, the Bureau of Land Management, the United States Bureau of Reclamation, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, Sierra Pacific Industries and the Me-Wuk Indian Tribe.

Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the County of Tuolumne on July 12, 2005

Ayes: 1st

Dist. /s/ Bass 

Noes: 0

Dist. ____________

2nd Dist. /s/ Maffei

Dist. ____________

3rd Dist. ABSENT: 3rd

Dist. _Peterson____

4th Dist. /s/ Thornton

Dist. ____________

5th Dist. /s/ Pland

ABSTAIN: Dist. ____________

/s/ Paolo Maffei
Chair of the Board of Supervisors

Attest: /s/ Alica Jamar
Clerk of the Board of Supervisors 
No. _98-05__________

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