Cibola NF & National Grasslands’ – North Fire on the Magdalena Ranger District is 1,058 acres

Magdalena, NM; May 25, 2016 – For Immediate Release. The North Fire on the Magdalena Ranger District has grown in size to 1,058 acres with approximately 83 personnel on the incident.   The lightning-caused fire started on Saturday, May 21, and is located in the San Mateo Mountains, 5 miles east of Grassy Lookout.

Yesterday’s acreage increase is due to interior islands of fuel burning within the North Fire perimeter, due to dry conditions and gusty southeasterly winds pushing the fire. The fire continues to burn in Ponderosa Pine, mixed-conifer, grass and brush.  Active fire behavior continues along the north and east flanks of the fire, backing down ridge lines and creeping along the ground in grass and brush. The fire is moving up canyon in the North drainage to Withington Wilderness boundary and to the west along the Crest Road (FR 138). As the North Fire continues to burn, pre-determined management areas are mapped to keep the fire within those boundaries.

A local Type 3 Incident Management Short Team is managing the fire for multiple resource objectives. These objectives include reducing hazardous fuels, maintain fire in a fire-adapted ecosystem, increasing firefighter and public safety, and protecting cultural resources and wildlife habitat and returning fire to the ecosystem.

The extended weather forecast surrounding the North Fire calls for a continued warming and drying trend, along with gusty afternoon wind continuing into the evening hours.  Smoke is visible from US Highway 60 and I-25 north and south of Socorro, New Mexico.  Also, area communities surround Magdalena, NM and Socorro, NM are experiencing drifting smoke and haze from the North Fire.

Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory problems are encouraged to take precautionary measures. Information on air quality and protecting your health can be found online at the New Mexico Department of Health website at

At this time there are no road advisories or closures in place.   There are no trail system closures within  the fire perimeter.

Fire Information: Updates will be available by contacting the Magdalena Ranger District at: (575) 854-2281 as well as online at New Mexico Fire Information website at , Twitter:@Cibola_NF,, and

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