RAWLINS, Wyo. (AP) — Preparations for wildfire season are underway in Rawlins this week.

Fifteen people are training to become wildland firefighters in a course sponsored by the Bureau of Land Management. In order to be certified, they must be able to complete a three-mile hike in less than 45 minutes while carrying a 45 pound pack.

The BLM says that if the weather permits they'll also conduct a fire exercise at the Old State Penitentiary to thin out sagebrush encroaching on the historic baseball field there.

The training is being done with help from the Rawlins and Carbon County fire departments.

Those who successfully complete the training will be qualified to work on fires for one year.