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Dynamic thermal rating (DTR) has been seen as an important tool for planning and operation of power systems, and recently, for smart-grid applications. To implement an effective DTR system, it is necessary to install monitoring stations along the studied lines, with a tradeoff between accurate estimations and equipment investments. In this paper, a novel heuristic is developed for identifying the number and locations of critical monitoring spans for the implementation of DTR. The heuristic is based on the use of historical-simulated weather data, obtained from a Mesoscale Weather Model, and the statistical analysis of the thermal capacities computed in each span along the line. The heuristic is applied to a line that is 325 km long in North Chile. Optimal monitoring sets, including the number and location of required monitoring stations, are determined for different confidence levels in all line segments. The results are compared to an equidistant monitoring strategy. The proposed heuristic shows robustness since it outperforms the equidistant monitoring strategy in all of the analyzed cases, especially for the longer line segments, which are subject to more complex weather patterns.