Silver City – Large thunderstorm systems have moved across the Gila National Forest over the weekend which started several fires. Firefighters have responded to 14 lightning-caused fires so far ranging in size from a spot to 4 acres. Nine of these fires were held to less than one-tenth acre, with one reaching one-half acre before being contained. Ground resources were able to get to most of these fires very quickly with short hikes.
Two of these fires are in the Gila Wilderness and are currently being monitored. This decision was made due to recent precipitation in the area, the scattered fuels, and the fires showing little to no growth as this time.
Two fires exceeded one acre and will require extended suppression activities before controlled. The Rincon Fire is located in the Gila Wilderness, 5 miles SW of Gila Hot Springs near Alum Mountain and is currently just over one acre. The Goat Fire is located 7 miles SW of Glenwood in Goat Basin. Eight smokejumpers from the Silver City Base were dispatched to this fire which is currently 4 acres. Containment efforts continue on both these fires.
The Silver City Dispatch managed 2 fires on the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests on the Arizona/ New Mexico border where logistics and communications were issues. These fires were southwest of Glenwood and west of Reserve.
All actions taken by fire managers lead to providing for public and firefighter safety first. With the current Stage II Restrictions in place, the public has been extremely cooperative and vigilant with compliance as evidenced in the reduction in human-caused fires with these extreme fire conditions. With the public's compliance at this time, forest officials see no need to increase restrictions in the near term.
For more information about the current fire activities on the Gila National Forest, call (575) 388-8201 or visit www.fs.usda.gov/gila or www.inciweb.org.
Information about current federal and state fire restrictions and closures in New Mexico and Arizona can be found by visiting www.publiclands.org/firenews.php.