In summer 2021, the San Mateo Resource Conservation District (RCD) received a $1 million grant from the State Coastal Conservancy to fund a 100-acre fire mitigation project in Quarry Park with two components: 1) thinning of understory vegetation within 100 feet of select trails to create shaded fuel breaks and 2) removal of hazard trees within 200 feet of select trails. Both enhance first responders’ ability to quickly access the Park to conduct fire suppression and containment activities to slow the spread of fire to nearby residential communities. Because the project involved removal of non-native understory trees and hazard trees while retaining native shrubs and plants, it also provided ecological benefits. This project was listed among San Mateo County Parks Department’s Wildlife Fuel Management Program 2021-2026 Projects.

In September 2021, the San Mateo County Parks Department and the San Mateo RCD initiated the project by hiring a contractor to create approximately nine acres of shaded fuel break along portions of the Quarry trail, Vista Point Trail, and Mirada East Fire Road. Crews removed eucalyptus, acacia, and cypress trees with a diameter of 10 inches or less, retaining as much native vegetation as possible. Work continues to thin understory vegetation on 40 additional acres to create shaded fuel breaks and removal of hazard trees on 100 acres. Following the completion of initial treatment, Parks Department staff has monitored the treated project areas to prescribe follow-up maintenance treatment, which occurs approximately every five years.

See a map of the project area