Fire is a fact of life in California. Our challenge is to find ways to live safely with it. Many California native grasses, trees and wildflowers evolved to depend on periodic fire for their long-term survival. Without it, these plants and the animals that depend on them, are replaced and lost.

Midpen staff are developing a new program aimed at adding carefully managed prescribed fire to our land management toolbox with the goal of restoring native plants and reducing dense vegetation build-up, and therefore the risk and severity of wildfires. The program is expected to take three years to develop with many opportunities for public input along the way, and an environmental review process required by the California Environmental Quality Act.

Midpen prepares for fire season in many ways, including maintaining fire breaks and roads, outfitting ranger trucks with water pumpers and using grazing and other tools to manage vegetation. Employees participate in annual fire training so they are ready to act as first responders to wildfires, and assist local fire departments as needed. Please remember that fires and smoking are always prohibited in Midpen preserves. Thank you for helping us stay fire safe!

Stay informed about the three-year development of a prescribed fire program and learn about opportunities for public input at openspace.org/fire.