Sly Park Vegetation Management Project (EID)
Description of Project Area: The Sly Park Vegetation Management Project is located entirely within El Dorado County on the western slope of the north central region of the Sierra Nevada range in California. The project planning area is within the Pollock Pines community region in an area known as Sly Park Recreation Area at Jenkinson Lake. The Recreation Area is included in Cal Fire VMP Rx North-024-AEU, Sly Park 2014 VMP and is located entirely within an area ranked as a “Very High” Fire Hazard Severity Zone (FHSZ). This area is listed as a priority #1 item in the El Dorado County Fire District CWPP for the Pollock Pines sub unit. The area is a prime example of a WUI (Wildland Urban Interface) with more than 5,000 habitable structures that could be affected by wildland fire in the immediate vicinity. The river drainage, ridgelines, and canyon terrain alignment combined with typical prevailing wind directions will likely feed a wildland fire directly into the town of Pollock Pines. Equally, an ignition originating out of Randolph Canyon (north of Hwy 50) during a north wind event will rapidly spread southwest, across Highway 50. SP-1,
Project Summary: The El Dorado Irrigation District (EID) received Cal Fire grant funding to conduct the Sly Park Vegetation Management Project, which will reduce vegetation in a fuel reduction zone of 118.5 acres and nearly 10 mile(s) long by 100 feet wide along the perimeter of Jenkinson Lake and 75 feet wide along both banks of the three primary tributaries in the Sly Park Recreation Area (SPRA) in Pollock Pines, El Dorado County.The risk of wildfire in these areas presents a dangerous hazard to facilities owned and operated by EID and numerous private homes within the immediate vicinity. EID provides consumptive water treatment and delivery services to various communities in El Dorado County and owns and operates critical water delivery, storage and hydroelectric infrastructure throughout the county. Work will be concentrated around Jenkinson Reservoir within the Sly Park Recreation Area, which serves as a primary source of water for western El Dorado County including the communities of Placerville, El Dorado Hills and Cameron Park. The Sly Park Recreation Area is a popular camping, biking, swimming and picnicking destination with over 500,000 visitors annually. All work in the fuel reduction zone is designed to protect over 5,000 habitable structures in the low-income adjacent communities of Pollock Pines and Fresh Pond and the nearby community of Camino, the guests who visit the park, as well as to protect critical EID water conveyance infrastructure from wildfire threat. This will be accomplished through a variety of vegetation management prescriptions such as mechanical and hand treatment, removal of fuel ladders, and tree pruning to inhibit vertical fire spread and the potential for crown fire. This project will build on work performed under the Sly Park VMP, the longest running Cal Fire cooperative VMP in the state (started in 1982), the 2017 CalFire SRAFPF/TM grant that removed hazard trees within SPRA and the RCD/Cal Fire fuels reduction interagency agreement awarded in 2017 ending in June 2018.
- Prevent wildfires and protect communities, infrastructure, and forest resources within the WUI;
- Implement vegetation prescriptions to reduce fire hazard, improve tree growth, and increase forest resiliency;
- Implement vegetation prescriptions to reduce the rate of spread, duration and intensity, and fuel ignition into the crowns of conifer forests;
- Retain and enhance ecosystem processes to create a fire resilient landscape which is compatible with the fuel hazard reduction prescriptions; and
- Support a collaborative approach to create fire resilient and fire-adapted communities in the region.
Treatment Types: Mechanical and hand treatment, removal of fuel ladders and tree pruning to inhibit vertical fire spread.
Planning Years: 2018-2019
Implementation Years: 2019-2021
Responsible Agency: El Dorado Irrigation District
Values to Be Protected: Sly Park is a WUI defense zone where the focus is to protect life and property. The goals of this project are to return the project area to a more managed, fire resistant condition and to protect local communities and EID’s critical infrastructure and water quality from the effects of catastrophic wildfire.
SOFAR Goals: This project supports all three goals of the South Fork American River (SOFAR) National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy as follows:
- Resilient Landscapes: The vegetation management activities of this Project is designed to make the forest more capable of withstanding climate impacts and more likely to avoid the negative impacts associated with catastrophic wildfire. Reducing the incidence of catastrophic wildfire in turn, reduces emissions of GHGs and also increases the carbon sequestration capacity of the forests.
- Fire Adapted Communities: Reducing hazard trees and fuel load around water conveyance structures and along roadways is a key characteristic of a fire-adapted community.
- Wildfire Response: By reducing structure vulnerability, suppression resources can be redirected to the wildfire suppression rather than structure protection.
Contact: Dan Corcoran, EID – firstname.lastname@example.org