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 Crews are using hand ignitions on the 157-acre Cordovas piles treatment area off Forest Road (FR) 103 approximately 3 miles west/southwest of Mesa Poleo. Roads in the area will remain open, but motorists can expect increased fire-related traffic and are advised to avoid FR 103 to help ensure firefighter and public safety. Fire managers expect to continue the prescribed pile burn tomorrow to complete the target acreage.Winter is an optimal time to burn slash piles because snow on the ground keeps the fire from spreading to adjacent vegetation. Generally, pile burns produce less smoke and burn with less intensity than broadcast burns across a larger landscape.The SFNF manages all prescribed fires in compliance with New Mexico state regulations on air quality and smoke management. Smoke will likely be visible from the communities of Gallina, Capulin, Mesa Poleo and Coyote as well as the State Highway 96 and US Highway 84 corridors. Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with…

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