Aerial Mulching in Four Mile Burn area... not a way to go out

Important information for both road cyclist and mountain bikers riding around Four Mile Burn area

The residents of the entire Four Mile Fire burn area would like to get through the next phase of the fire recovery, as soon as possible. One of the very important recovery projects will be a Spring aerial mulching over areas of Sunshine, Fourmile, and Sugarloaf canyons. The next phase of the burn recovery will be to seed the burn areas and then to mulch, in order to reduce flooding in the area. Several concerns to cyclists riding in these areas are:

  • The companies that are bringing in the heavy equipment are NOT from this area-therefore they are not used to the twists and turns of our canyons. This also means they are not used to the many cyclists that ride these roads.
  • During the aerial mulching, a requirement of the FAA is that no one can be in the mulch treatment areas while the mulch is being applied by helicopter, except for designated contractor employees and agency staff who are wearing highly visible clothing and have radio contact with the pilots. Residents may not be home during the mulching and this would include cyclists form Boulder, too. Please respect that the residents have been and will continue to be inconvenienced from this fire-we do not need to add to this by riding in these areas during these very important projects.
  • The possible floods in these areas, especially the deep Fourmile canyon is a very real risk. If you are riding in these areas and it begins to rain, leave immediately. Do not continue on and if you see water rising in the creeks and rivers, climb to a higher area and to safety. This is not a joke. It is a real threat.

Beginning the last week of March and the first week of April, mulch and equipment will be delivered to one of two staging areas. The first staging area is on private property off of Left Fork Road in the Sugar Loaf area. About 4-6 trucks are delivering mulch to the Sugarloaf staging area this week. Beginning on Monday, March 28th, trucks will begin delivering mulch to a staging area on private property off of Sunshine Canyon Drive west of Bald Mountain Open Space. Please note that staging areas are on private property and not open to the public.

Mulch will be delivered for about three weeks at each staging area as needed. Helicopters are expected to arrive on Monday, April 4th to prepare for aerial mulching. Thursday, April 7th is the first anticipated date for aerial mulching to begin. Two helicopters will be used for the aerial mulching. They will begin flying as early as 7am and will only fly during daylight hours as weather permits. They will not be able to fly in windy weather. All dates are tentative and may change due to weather or other circumstances.


IMPORTANT, PLEASE READ: A requirement of the FAA is that no one can be in the mulch treatment areas while the mulch is being applied by helicopter, except for designated contractor employees and agency staff who are wearing highly visible clothing and have radio contact with the pilots. We are asking home and land owners to leave your property when we have scheduled mulch for your area. Again: FAA REGULATIONS REQUIRE THAT INDIVIDUALS WITHIN THE MULCHING AREA BE OUT OF THEIR HOMES WHEN THE AERIAL MULCHING IS OCCURRING. This includes riding up any of the canyons.

Updates and schedules: http://maps.bouldercounty.org/gisapps/erosiontreatmentviewer/

*** Updated 4/7/2011 ***

Saw @irmigrrr tweet this today.

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