Beaver Creek Fire Update Sept. 12, 2017 Pecos/Las Vegas Ranger District, Santa Fe National Forest

Reported: Members of the public reported seeing smoke on Sept. 10, 2017, and the Barillas Fire Lookout Tower confirmed smoke and an approximate location on Sept. 11.

Cause: Unconfirmed, but lightning is the most probable cause.

Size: Estimated at 1-2 acres.

Location: On the southeastern edge of the Pecos Wilderness on the Pecos/Las Vegas Ranger District of the Santa Fe National Forest (SFNF) near Hermit’s Peak and about 4 miles south of the village of Rociada.

Vegetation: Mixed conifer.

Current Situation: The Beaver Creek Fire is located within the Pecos Wilderness where steep terrain and limited access make it difficult to send fire crews in and, more importantly, to get them out safely in an emergency. Firefighter and public safety is always the first priority, and fire managers are monitoring the Beaver Creek Fire from a distance. Wilderness areas are managed to preserve their wilderness character, which frequently means allowing a lightning-caused fire to play its natural ecological role by reducing fuel loads, renewing vegetation and soil nutrients, and enhancing wildlife habitat. Fire crews will be watching the Beaver Creek Fire and providing point protection for any values at risk outside Pecos Wilderness boundaries. High fuel moistures, strong recovery of relative humidities overnight and cooler temperatures in the area are expected to keep the fire from spreading. Backcountry hikers are advised to avoid Trails 220 and 223 in the Pecos Wilderness due to their proximity to the Beaver Creek Fire.

Weather: A weak disturbance moving out of Colorado will boost the chance of showers and thunderstorms in northern New Mexico Tuesday evening. A weak Pacific frontal system will push through Thursday and bring cooler temperatures and drier air.  Smoke/Air Quality: Smoke from the Beaver Creek Fire may be visible from the villages of Rociada, Pendaries, Sapello, Cañoncito, Manuelitas, Tierra Monte and San Ignacio. Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory or heart disease 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’s website at https://nmtracking.org/fire.

Fire Information: Updates will be posted on the New Mexico Fire Information website at nmfireinfo.com and on @SantaFeNF and www.facebook.com/SantaFeNF. For additional information, contact the Pecos/Las Vegas Ranger District at 505.757.6121 or 505.425.3534.

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