’99 prescribed fire in Caribou-Poker Creeks Research Watershed stopped Haystack Fire’s spread

The Haystack Fire (#196) is a lightning-caused fire burning in the Caribou-Poker Creeks Research Watershed, managed by the Institute of Arctic Biology at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. The watershed is closed to public access, reserving the area for research on climate, hydrology, permafrost, and ecology. In 1999 the FROSTFIRE research project implemented a prescribed burn in this watershed. That fire, considered the most thoroughly documented prescribed fire in history according to research on the subject,  helped stop the Haystack Fire’s spread to the northeast by removing black spruce in that area. Researchers will continue to conduct studies in this watershed, examining the effects of the recent wildfire on components of the ecosystem. Access to the area will remain restricted to maintain the integrity of these important studies. More information is available on the Caribou-Poker Creeks Research Watershed website.

This image shows where the Haystack Fire stopped its spread at the edge of the 1999 Frost Fire prescribed burn.

The FROSTFIRE, a 1999 prescribed burn in the Caribou-Poker Creeks Research Watershed, halted the northeastern spread of the Haystack Fire (#196). The photo from Tuesday, June 22, 2021, shows the stark edge of the Haystack Fire against the green foreground of the old prescribed fire.

Categories: Active Wildland Fire, AK Fire Info

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