New Mexico has a number of active wildfires right now, including the Cooks Peak fire and the Calf Canyon Fire. Here is the latest information about the fires in New Mexico and evacuations as of April 22, 2022. Read on for more details.
New Mexico Fire Maps
Quite a few fire maps — including interactive wildfire maps — are available to help you pinpoint where the latest wildfires are located. Remember that if you are near a fire, conditions can change quickly so you will want to pay attention to your local news sources for breaking updates.
MappingSupport.com has an interactive map available showing the perimeters of two major fires in New Mexico, the Calf Canyon Fire and the Cooks Peak Fire
You can view the interactive map for MappingSupport here.
Another map of the state is available from FireWeatherAvalanche.org here.
Inciweb also has a map of New Mexico fires here. A screenshot of the fires as of the time of this article’s publication is below.
A list of the major individual fires and their containment percentages is below.
Calf Canyon Fire & Hermits Peak Fire
According to Inciweb, the cause of the Calf Canyon Fire is under investigation. As of April 22 at 1:12 p.m. Central, the fire was still 0% contained and 3,000 acres in size. The fire is located 18 miles northwest of Las Vegas and winds have helped the fire grow larger. We’re combining this listing with the Hermits Peak Fire listing since they are so close to each other.
Inciweb noted on April 22: “The National Weather Service has issued an extreme weather warning. The public is encouraged to stay vigilant on evacuation status through the San Miguel County Sheriff’s Office and be prepared to leave in a rapid manner. Due to extremely high winds, powerlines and trees may block egress in many areas. Roads will likely become congested with traffic leaving the area, and smoke will make it difficult to see. Use extreme caution on the roads.”
The Hermits Peak fire is 7,573 acres in size as of 12 p.m. Central on April 22 and 91% contained, Inciweb reported. This one is approximately 12 miles northwest of Las Vegas. An extreme weather warning today gives both wildfires a chance of growing.
Evacuation Updates: Inciweb recommends following the San Miguel County Sheriff’s Facebook page for evacuation updates. This page is also sharing updates from the U.S. Forest Service-Santa Fe National Forest’s Facebook page.
The hotline for this and the Hermits Peak fire is: 505-356-2636 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.
Cooks Peak Fire
The Cooks Peak fire is 21,200 acres in size, according to Inciweb around 1:30 p.m. Central on April 22.
Strong winds could lead to fire growth.
Inciweb noted: “Extreme fire behavior with spotting and group tree torching was observed on the Cooks Peak Fire Thursday, and winds are expected to increase Friday, allowing the fire to grow rapidly in multiple directions. Air tankers and helicopters are available and were used to support firefighting efforts on the ground Thursday, but winds may hamper their ability to fly on Friday. Additional firefighters and equipment are being ordered.”
Smoke from the fire is expected to impact surrounding communities, Inciweb noted, including “Ocate, Rayado, Philmont Scout Ranch headquarters, Cimarron, and surrounding communities in Mora and Colfax counties.”
The cause is under investigation.
The Colfax County Rapid Response Facebook page is also sharing updates. This is a volunteer firefighting community.
As of 8 a.m. on April 22, Inciweb noted the following evacuations:
“The Mora and Colfax Counties have announced updated evacuation status for the following communities: Colfax County – GO- Sweetwater, Rayado, and Sunnyside – evacuate now! SET –Miami, Philmont Scout Ranch to the headquarters, and Cimarron. Residents in Colfax County should sign up now for Code Red. This system notifies residents of evacuation status.”
Mora County – GO: east of County Road 009 and north of NM Highway 120. Ready: west of County Road 009 and north of Highway 120. These changes have occurred because of fire movement overnight and the predicted weather and extreme fire behavior expected today. Residents can evacuate livestock to the Colfax County Fairgrounds. Memorial Middle School in Las Vegas, Wagon Mound Public Schools, and Mora Schools are available for evacuees.
The Mora and Colfax County Sheriff’s Offices are using the Ready! Set! Go! program for evacuation status that provides information on evacuation and evacuation preparation: Ready!: Be Ready! for potential evacuations. Set!: Be Set! to evacuate at a moment’s notice Go!: Evacuate now. Leave immediately. The Cooks Peak Fire is moving rapidly being driven by high winds. Evacuation status can change rapidly, and there may not be sufficient time to prepare to evacuate.
According to New Mexico Fire Information, the James Fire has been kept at .59 acres as of 1:37 p.m. on April 22. (However, this number was later estimated to be two acres.) Firefighters have been keeping up with spot fires developing from winds.
They provided the following Google Maps location to show approximately where the fire started on private property, west of 16 Springs Road. Containment is 0%.
The website noted evacuations have been put in place for “Residents in the 16 Springs area on Highway 82 between Mile Marker 22-25.”
The McBride Fire is 6,159 acres in size and 89% contained as of April 22, Inciweb noted.
Inciweb shared on April 22: “Today is an Extremely Critical Fire Weather Day. There are red flag warnings in effect. Lincoln County, the Village of Ruidoso, Otero County and the Lincoln National Forest are ALL under fire restrictions or burn bans. Please do not burn debris, weld or have campfires on red flag warning days… Minimal fire activity was observed across the fire as crews continued to patrol and monitor the fire. An excavator was used alongside ground crews to support suppression repair work in the Eagle Creek area. Small pockets of smoldering debris will continue to produce smoke over the coming days and weeks. This is very common after a fire. As the fire continues to release resources, a group remains available for initial attack for any new fire starts.”
Facebook also has a page for this fire with updates here.
Nogal Canyon Fire
This fire is 412 acres in size and 84% contained as of April 22, Inciweb reported. It started on April 12 and burned six residences and eight outbuildings. It was about 12 miles west of Capitan, New Mexico. Evacuations are now lifted. The cause was a downed powerline.
The Overflow Fire is 100% contained as of April 13 and 1,900 acres in size. It’s still listed as active on Inciweb.
According to New Mexico Fire Information, the Simona Fire is 165 acres and 25% contained as of 11:45 a.m. on April 22. It’s in Valencia County near Jarales. The fire’s being closely watched due to high winds in the region.
Valencia County Fire Department is also providing updates on Facebook. The cause is under investigation, and the fire is on private property. Two natural gas lines and a telecom line are threatened, but no homes are currently threatened. No evacuations are in place as of 11:45 a.m.