Through the year, Los Padres forest rangers have been thinning brush and piling it in the Santa Lucia Ranger District and at Figueroa Mountain, and with the arrival of winter’s rains, plans are in motion to begin pile burns. Much of the controlled fire will occur a few miles northwest of Los Olivos, and residents can receive notice a few days in advance via Twitter @LosPadresNF.
Around the county, the ban on permitted burning within Santa Barbara County Fire’s jurisdiction was lifted as the agency went to winter preparedness level. Such vegetation removal is for piled brush only, and applicant sites and piles will be inspected. Permit holders must contact County Fire prior to lighting up.
The forest and the county work closely with the Air Pollution Control District to determine the days that are suitable for pile burns. The general criteria are good moisture levels and low temperatures and winds.