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Weather helps Grand Teton prescribed burns

Weather helps Grand Teton prescribed burns

MOOSE, Wyo. (AP) - Favorable weather helped fire crews carry out two prescribed burns in Grand Teton National Park.

The goal of the burns was to reduce fuel for wildfires and to improve wildlife habitat, according to park officials.

One burn Sept. 28 covered about 120 acres of sagebrush between Gros Ventre Road and the Gros Ventre River west of Kelly.

"Now there will be a buffer area west of town," park spokeswoman Jackie Skaggs said. "In the event we get a lightning strike out there it will help us defend the town of Kelly."

The fire was originally planned for last spring but was not carried out because the weather was so dry and hot.

A 1,700-acre burn was also completely recently on Wolff Ridge south of Moran. The goal of that fire was to burn aging aspen and sagebrush.

Aspen depend on fire and other disturbances to regenerate. Wyoming has lost half its aspen stands over the past 100 years due to fire suppression.