Via the Saint Croix National Scenic Riverway:
St. Croix National Scenic Riverway plans to burn numerous brush piles in the Riverway corridor in February and March of 2020. These burns may take place February 25th – March 31st depending on weather conditions.
The National Park Service (NPS) is conducting these burns to remove brush piles created from invasive species removal, which is part of a larger effort to improve prairie and savanna habitat along the St. Croix and Namekagon rivers.
The areas where piles are to be burned are:
- Arcola; located in Washington County, four miles north of Stillwater, Minnesota. The site has 20 piles and is in being restored to native prairie and oak savanna.
- Rice Lake Flats; located in St. Croix County, five miles northwest of Somerset, Wisconsin. This site has approximately 40 piles. The area will be restored to oak savanna and native prairie.
- Tewksbury; located in Polk County, one mile southwest of Osceola, Wisconsin. This site has approximately five piles. The area will be restored to oak savanna and native prairie.
- Peaslee; located in Polk County, two miles west of Dresser, Wisconsin. This site is a large island in the St. Croix River and has approximately 10 piles. The area will be restored to oak savanna.
- Osceola Glade; located in Polk County, two miles west of Dresser, Wisconsin. This site has approximately 15 piles. The area will be restored to oak savanna.
- St. Croix Shores; located in Chisago County, four miles north of Taylors Falls, Minnesota. This site has approximately 20 piles. The area will be restored to oak forest.
- Springbrook Savanna; this site, along the Namekagon River, has approximately five piles. It is located about one quarter mile northeast of Springbrook, Wisconsin, in Washburn County. The site is being restored to savanna and will be planted following pile burning.
The NPS has developed detailed plans for pile burning and the fires are carried out by trained and certified personnel. The plans address temperature, relative humidity, wind, and other conditions under which a burn can take place, protection of adjacent properties, communications, needed manpower and equipment, safety, and other considerations.
The piles will be burned while surrounding vegetation is not flammable. If conditions are not favorable on the day when burning is planned or while piles are still hot, the burn will be rescheduled or piles may be extinguished.
The St. Croix National Scenic Riverway’s Fire Management Plan is available for viewing on the park’s website.
For additional information, contact the St. Croix River Visitor Center in St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin, at 715-483-2274. Updates regarding the planned brush pile burning will be posted to the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway website and Facebook page when exact days and specific locations are determined.