Prescribed burning is scheduled to begin this week in the Ashley National Forest Flaming Gorge-Vernal Ranger District northeast of the Ute Tower. Depending on weather, burning will begin on Wednesday or Thursday, November 7th or 8th. The treatment area is 1,695 acres with an estimated 300 to 600 acres of that planned for completion during the operation. “In 2019, our prescribed fire and fuels reduction program has planned to burn or treat 13,000 acres based upon weather, fuel availability, and the use of mechanical treatment methods,” shares Forest Supervisor Jeff Schramm. “The reintroduction of fire into our timber stands will build a resilient landscape less prone to catastrophic wildfire.” The average natural fire return interval in the ponderosa pine forests is around 20 years on the Ashley National Forest. Prescribed burning is considered an effective way to reduce fuels. The burning activity from the prescribed burns may be visible from Highway 44.