Hanceville Fire Reforestation
In 2017, the Hanceville Fire burned approximately 240,000 hectares (590,000 acres), most of it a stand-destroying fire. In the burned area, Lodgepole Pine are expected to regenerate over time; however, Douglas-fir stands are not. Douglas-fir stands need live seed trees present to distribute seed, which is a challenge as there are no live seed trees for many kilometers.
The fire has negatively impacted the forest stand and has also impaired the surrounding soil, riparian ecosystems, wildlife, and water quality. In addition to the environmental impacts, the Hanceville Fire has drastically altered the local indigenous communities’ access and ability to hunt and gather food. Another stakeholder in the region, ranchers, not only lost cattle in the fires but now see the grazing potential reduced where the forest and grasslands burned. Without interventions, this area would take many decades to grow back to previous conditions. Tree planting will significantly speed the process of returning the area to a forested state. A further goal is to establish tree species that will be resilient in the face of climate change.
One Tree Planted and its partner affiliates seek to reforest areas impacted by the Hanceville Fire by planting trees in areas called Mule Deer Winter Range (MDWR). Reforesting MDWR areas is a high priority as they provide critical winter habitat for mule deer. In addition, Douglas-fir stands provide snow interception, travel corridors, and winter forage for mule deer.
* Project restores natural hydrologic conditions to facilitate improved capture and infiltration of surface water and groundwater recharge