Overgaard, Ariz., July 19, 2018 – The Summer/Fall Fuelwood season has begun on the Black Mesa Ranger District. Changes to the District fuelwood program have taken place this season. As part of the District’s timber management program, the fuelwood program is being updated to better align with the overall management objective as we strive to reduce fire danger and move the forest toward a more resilient natural condition. Our fuelwood permit program provides the public an opportunity to assist in this important forest restoration effort.
Over the past several years, the availability of Oak and Alligator Juniper to fuelwood cutters has reduced the fuel loading and availability of these species. Additional stress has been placed on these species by wildlife grazing, drought, and errant fuelwood cutters removing green trees. Until timber managers have had an opportunity to fully evaluate the effects of these stresses and identify potential areas where cutting will not negatively impact the resource, these species have been removed from the personal fuelwood program.
The Black Mesa Ranger District has a plentiful supply of Pinyon Pine and Shaggy Bark Juniper also referred to as “Arizona Cedar”. These species rival the burn qualities of Alligator Juniper and oak and make excellent fuelwood for home use. Both Pinyon and Shaggy Bark Juniper have a pleasant aroma and produce high heat. The fuelwood table below outlines the burn qualities of each tree species commonly found on the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests. While not as abundant as Shaggy Bark and Pinyon, Douglas-fir is available on the district and is another excellent fuelwood.
Permits can be purchased on other districts of the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests. Each district has unique permits and can only sell their own permit. Please check the Apache-Sitgreaves website at http://www.fs.usda.gov/asnf for more information.