Carson National Forest Bonita Wildfire Update 06/15/2017


Location:     El Rito Ranger District

Bonita Canyon

3 miles north of Cañon Plaza

Size:  Approx. 1800 acres

Containment:  15%

Cause:  Lightning

Start Date: June 3, 2017


El Rito, NM, June 15, 2017—For Immediate Release. Hand ignitions continued yesterday as planned to secure the fire line along Forest Road 42F along the northern edge of the fire and Forest Road 42 along the eastern edge of the fire. Burn out operations along these segments of line are planned to continue today to complete the line.  Aerial ignitions were also implemented yesterday for a short time during favorable weather conditions.  More aerial ignitions are planned for today weather permitting.

A significant amount of smoke is expected to settle in Vallecitos Canyon and local communities overnight. Smoke will dissipate during daylight hours.  Residents of these areas are advised to close their windows and keep them closed until smoke dissipates and visibility improves to about five miles.

Residents with respiratory or heart disease, adults over 65, young children and pregnant women should consider relocating to an area with clean air until local air quality improves. Conditions are expected to improve significantly in the near future.  If your health is affected negatively from exposure to smoke take extra care to stay inside or move to an area with better air quality.  You should also see your doctor or healthcare professional as needed.

Information regarding air quality and health protection can be found online at the New Mexico Department of Health’s website at

A closure order for those lands located within the boundaries of the Bonita Fire Area remains in effect until further notice. For information regarding the forest closure contact the El Rito Ranger District at (575) 581-4554.

The area within Forest roads 42, 42F and 274 is closed due to the proximity of the fire and heavy fire traffic.

The Continental Divide Trail is not within the closure area. Hikers, bicyclists and recreationists are advised that smoke may impact the area and create breathing difficulties.

For fire information, please call the Bonita Fire Information Line at (575) 758-6345 from 8:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M., or visit Inciweb, Carson National Forest Facebook page or Twitter @CarsonNF.


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