Aerial view of Board Camp Grove, showing the dead trees which resulted from the high severity of the Castle Fire.

Public Scoping Information


The National Park Service (NPS) is proposing to plant seedlings of giant sequoia (Sequoiadendron giganteum) within areas which burned at high intensity and severity during the 2020 Castle Fire in Sequoia National Park.

The 2020 Castle Fire burned through 22 giant sequoia groves and burned 9.7% of the entire range of giant sequoias at high severity. Three giant sequoia groves: Board Camp, Upper Dillonwood, and Homer's Nose lost a significant amount of monarch sequoia trees, inhibiting their ability to naturally regenerate without intervention.

The NPS has collected sequoia cones from Board Camp and nearby groves and is proposing to plant them in Board Camp grove as a pilot project in fall of 2022. In addition, a small number of seedlings from seed collections held by a United States Forest Service Placerville nursery would also be planted in a select area to test for potential benefits of including drought-adapted sequoia seedlings.

The proposed action includes growing sequoia seedlings from collected seed, flying in the seedlings via helicopter to the remote Board Camp grove, and planting 12,000 sequoia seedlings in the fall, just prior to winter precipitation. Given the location, roughly seven miles off-trail in remote wilderness, watering and post-planting care is not planned at this time. Seedlings would be monitored for percent of survivorship the following fall. Additional seedlings may be planted if the pilot is deemed successful, or different methods may be employed the following year. The NPS anticipates that planting would occur in October 2022 and may occur again in 2023.

Public comments on the proposed action will be accepted February 22nd until midnight, March 25th, 2022. Please comment online by clicking on the "comment now" button to the left. Comments that provide insights about the current proposed action and potential mitigations around public closures are particularly helpful.

Comments may also be mailed to:
Superintendent, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks,
Attn: Mineral King Road Rehabilitation,
47050 Generals Highway,
Three Rivers, CA 93271

The documents below contain information about the purpose and need for action, specific information about the proposed action, and resources of concern. These materials include a narrative description of the proposed action, a map showing the burn severity in the grove, the press release that was shared on February 22, 2022, the slide show that was presented in the virtual public meeting on March 1, 2022, as well as a transcript of the presentation. The virtual public meeting that was held on March 1, 2022 was recorded. A video of that recording will soon be available on the park website at: https://www.nps.gov/seki/getinvolved/participation.htm.

Please contact Elly_Boerke@nps.gov with any questions or if you having difficulty accessing any of the information posted.
 
Comment Period: Closed        02/22/2022 - 03/25/2022
Document Content:
Grove Fire Severity MapGrove Fire Severity Map   (100.4 KB, Image file)
Press ReleasePress Release   (447.0 KB, PDF file)
Disclaimer: Links within the above document(s) were valid as of the date published.
Note: Some of the files may be in PDF format and can be viewed using the Adobe Acrobat Reader software. You may download a free copy of Acrobat Reader from Adobe Systems.