National Park Service to conduct controlled burns, April 25 to May 20

Agency will focus on four areas along lower river this spring for prescribed fires.




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Igniting a prescribed fire. (Saint Croix National Scenic Riverway)

St. Croix National Scenic Riverway plans to conduct controlled burns in the Riverway corridor from April 25 – May 20, 2022 depending on weather and site conditions. The National Park Service (NPS) is conducting these burns as part of an effort to improve prairie and savanna habitat along the St. Croix and Namekagon rivers.

The areas where prescribed burning is to occur:

  • Arcola; located in Washington County, four miles north of Stillwater, Minnesota. The area will be broadcast burned to control invasive species and promote the re-establishment of savanna, mixed forest, and prairie habitat.
  • HQ Demonstration Gardens; located in St. Croix Falls in Polk County, WI. The area will be broadcast burned to consume thatch and maintain the prairie.
  • Peaslee Island; located in Polk County, 3 miles south of St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin. This site will be broadcast burned to consume thatch and maintain savanna, mixed hardwood, and prairie habitat.
  • Rice Lake Flats; located in St. Croix County, five miles northwest of Somerset, Wisconsin. The eastern forested subunit will be broadcast burned to control invasive species and promote the re establishment of savanna and mixed forest habitat.

The NPS has developed detailed plans for controlled burning and the fires are carried out by trained and certified personnel. The plans address weather conditions such as temperature, relative humidity, and wind under which a burn can safely take place, protection of adjacent properties, communications, necessary personnel and equipment, safety, and other considerations. The St. Croix National Scenic Riverway’s Fire Management Plan is available for review.

The controlled burning will be rescheduled if conditions are not favorable on the planned burn day.

For additional information, contact the St. Croix River Visitor Center in St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin, at 715-483- 2274. Updates regarding the planned controlled burning will be posted to the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway website and Facebook page when exact days and specific locations are determined.