Clear Creek Project


Photo of the Clear Creek project pre-treatment.Above Photo: Pre-treatment.

Photo of the Clear Creek project post-treatment. Above Photo: Post-treatment. Please note that this photo is off-color due to the excessive California wildfire smoke we had last year.

Photo of the Clear Creek project post-treatment. Above Photo: Pile burn at Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park in the winter of 2021

About this Project

For over ten years NDF has assisted private landowners, the Nature Conservancy, and Nevada State Lands, Nevada State Parks, to reduce the risk of wildfire in the Clear Creek drainage along Highway 50 between Carson City and Lake Tahoe. This area is at the intersection between the Sierra Nevada mixed conifer forests and the Great Basin rangelands. Lightning and human caused wildfires are of great concern due to high fuel loading, the local Zephyr winds, the number of homes present, and Clear Creek being an important watershed and drinking source to Carson City.

NDF accomplished mastication on over 50 acres of private property around Clear Creek in 2020. Mastication focused on shrub fields that grew back after previous fires and forested areas that haven’t burned in over one hundred years. Areas covered with sprouting shrub species such as manzanita and tobacco brush were masticated at 100% as these species grow back quickly from the cut stumps. Areas covered with non-sprouting shrub species such as sagebrush and bitterbrush were masticated at a rate of approximately 50% to create mosaics and space in between shrubs to reduce fuel loading and fire risk while maintain wildlife habitat, preventing erosion, and preventing cheatgrass infestations.


For more information contact Anna Higgins at