New Mexico has a number of active wildfires right now. Here is the latest information about the fires in New Mexico as of June 29-30, 2019. In some parts of New Mexico, smoke seen drifting into region is actually from the Woodbury Fire in Arizona. Read on for more details.
You can view an interactive map provided by GEOMAC here. Using the map, you can zoom in to view specific fires in the New Mexico region. A map is embedded below from GEOMAC, but you may need to zoom in to use it. You can go to the full map and see all the full features here.
And Inciweb has a map you can see here. Inciweb has more fires listed than GEOMAC, interestingly.
Here’s a list of the fires in New Mexico right now.
Smoke from Arizona’s Woodbury Fire Can Be Seen in New Mexico
First, in parts of New Mexico, smoke you’re seeing is actually from the Woodbury Fire in Arizona. Here’s an interactive map of the Woodbury Fire’s location in Arizona. The following embedded map of the fire is provided by MappingSupport.com and Joseph Elfelt.
You can learn more about the Arizona fires in Heavy’s story here.
And now for details about fires in New Mexico.
This fire is 1,819 acres and 89 percent contained according to Inciweb on June 21, which is the last update provided to Inciweb. It started on June 6 and is 23 miles southeast of Quemado. Projected activity is: “Minimal movement within existing fire perimeter. Interior flanking, backing and creeping. Possible occasional single tree torching. Minimal smoke production as interior pockets consume.”
It’s burning on National Forest System lands in the Quemado Ranger District in Gila National Forest, Inciweb notes. They added: “Lack of access and resistance to control, the ability of firefighters to suppress this fire will be extremely difficult and limited. The public should expect to see this fire continue to grow across the landscape. Firefighters will continue to assess and engage this fire where and when opportunities exist.”
The latest update was made on June 21 by Inciweb. The June 15 map above is the most recent map provided by Inciweb.
Indian Peaks Prescribed Fire
This is a prescribed fire set to help cut down on out-of-control fires later. It’s a 10,000 acre project.
This fire is 322 acres, Inciweb noted. It’s 100 percent contained as of June 21, the last update from Inciweb. It was caused by lightning and is in Catron County, New Mexico in the Gila Wildnerness boundaries, on National Forest System lands. It’s in monitor status at the moment, five miles north of Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument.
Lone Mountain Fire
This fire is 1,350 acres and 30 percent contained as of June 29 at 11:41 a.m. At one point it was smaller and 80 percent contained and a final update was issued on June 20. However, the fire found some new life after that and updates are now being issued again.
It was caused by lightning and is six miles north of White Oaks, NM, within the Castle Garden Mesa region. Inciweb notes: “The Lone Mountain Fire began on May 26, 2019, and is located about 6 miles north of White Oaks, NM on the Smokey Bear Ranger District of the Lincoln National Forest.”
Smoke may be visible from this fire on Carrizozo, Highway 54, and surrounding areas.
The fire’s 250-acre increase was within the established perimeter area, which is good news. It does not pose a risk. Inciweb wrote on June 29:
Crews, including two hotshot teams and three engines, will complete back burning along roads in anticipation of increased fire activity over the coming days and possibly weeks. Safety always comes first in fire management. Using fire boundaries to confine the fire increases the safety of personnel on the ground and reduces the number of firefighters needed.
Over the next few days, and possibly weeks, smoke may be visible from Carrizozo, Capitan and Highway 54. For more information on how to protect your health during a wildfire, please visit New Mexico Department of Health website at https://nmtracking.org/fire.
The Lone Mountain Fire is burning in an area with no structures or other values at risk. Naturally-ignited wildland fires play an important role in fire-adapted ecosystems by reducing dead wood accumulations to ash and releasing nutrients that stimulate new plant growth, and helping to regulate insect and disease levels. These fires also create a mosaic of burned and unburned vegetation, which increases habitat diversity and breaks up continuous fuels on the forest floor (branches, fallen trees, etc.) which can help limit or slow the intensity and spread of large wildfires in the future.”
Pine Lodge Fire
This fire was 460 acres and 2 percent contained according to Inciweb on June 20. Now, as of June 29 at 9:49 a.m., the fire is 12,828 acres and 33 percent contained.
The cause is under investigation. It’s 50 miles from Roswell off FS Road 130 in the Capitan Mountain Wilderness and five miles northwest of Arabela, New Mexico.
The Pine Lodge Fire is burning on the north-east end of the Capitan Mountains, near Capitan, New Mexico. Approximately 85% of the fire is on the Smokey Bear District, Lincoln National Forest, with the remaining 15% on state and private lands. Where firefighters can engage, they are actively working to suppress the fire. Meanwhile, in the wilderness where steep, rocky terrain prevents safe ground access, the fire is slowing moving through areas that were burned in the 2004 Peppin Fire. Meanwhile, firefighters are prepping potential areas where the fire might move out of the wilderness, insuring fire fighter and public safety and structural protection as high priorities. Fire officials anticipate monsoonal activity will ultimately control the fire in the wilderness.
On June 29, Inciweb said that fire activity is still moderate and there’s been no precipitation. Fire behavior will be most active near the Capitan Peak and in Copeland Canyon. Smoke may pick up as the weather changes.
- “NM State Road 246 from Capitan to Roswell continues to be closed, local residents will be allowed to access their home or property. For status on road closures, citizens are encouraged to contact the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department at 575-648-2341.”
- “An area closure is in place for Capitan Mountains east of Capitan Gap Road until further notice. All trail systems and Forest Service roads within the closure area are closed to public use. West Mountain is open for recreation. The official closure information and map is posted on the Pine Lodge Fire InciWeb page.”
Rendija Rx Fire
This is a prescribed fire set to help cut down on out-of-control fires later.
On the border of Arizona and New Mexico, this fire is now listed as 100 percent contained after it reached 400 acres.
This lightning-caused fire is 3,500 acres and although listed as active on Inciweb, it’s 100 percent contained. It’s northwest of Winston, NM off Highway 59.