Cibola NF & National Grasslands’ – Final North Fire Update Acreage Remains at 42,102 Acres

Magdalena, NM; July 2, 2016 – The North Fire on the Magdalena Ranger District remains at 42,102 acres; at 85% containment. The lightning-caused fire started on May 21st and is located in the San Mateo Mountains, 25 miles southwest of Magdalena, NM. The North Fire continues to be actively managed for multiple resource benefits.

Culvert refurbishment will continue to clear debris from the CCC culvert system along FR 549 and Monica Saddle. Rehabilitation will continue in fire affected areas. FR 138 continued to be patrolled and monitored to prevent further growth. The fire continues to burn in ponderosa pine, piñon–juniper, mixed-conifer, and grass. The North Fire is enhancing wildlife habitat while protecting cultural resources, reducing hazardous fuels and returning fire to the ecosystem.  Fire behavior and effects are being assessed to ensure they meet the incident objectives. Point protection is being provided to maintain private and infrastructure values.  There are currently 60 personnel assigned to the incident.

The Resources Advisor (READ) for the North Fire Gabe Partido stated, “Rehabilitation work is nearly complete, and all the personnel on the fire have done a huge amount of high quality work in a short amount of time. Work includes fixing fences, pulling fences, assessing trails, building barriers to reduce areas where motorized access is not authorized, inventorying cultural sites, rehabilitation of constructed fire line, Helispots, camps, and rehabilitation of main roads impacted by the fire. Everyone involved on the North Fire, including district personnel, have done a great job.”

The monsoonal flow of wetting precipitation will remain through the 4th of July weekend.  Smoke from the North Fire is minimal from US Highway 60 west of Magdalena, NM, due to precipitation received on the fire line.  When driving on Forest Roads during approaching storms, please drive carefully, reduce speed, drive with your lights on, and ’turn around don’t drown’ at water crossings.  Also, when hiking trails, stay away from ridge tops and seek lower elevations until thunderstorms pass.

A temporary Area Closure Order remain in effect for the vicinity of the North Fire. All National Forest System lands, roads, and trails within the closure area are closed to public use. Stage I fire restrictions have been implemented on the Magdalena Ranger District, Cibola National Forest and National Grasslands.

This will be the final update for the North Fire. Weekly updates will be posted by visiting the New Mexico Fire Information website at www.nmfireinfo.com , Twitter:@Cibola_NF, www.facebook.com/cibolanf, and http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/. For more information, please contact the Magdalena Ranger District at 575-854-2281.

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