Palmer Fire Update – Pecos/Las Vegas District, Santa Fe NF

SANTA FE, NM – Sept. 23, 2017 – For Immediate Release.  Fire staff continue to actively manage the Palmer Fire on Rowe Mesa, approximately 8 miles southeast of Rowe, NM.  This lightning-caused fire, detected Sept. 12, is providing an excellent opportunity for fire managers to achieve multiple resource benefits.

Yesterday, weather conditions were favorable to add low-intensity fire to the landscape. Currently an estimated 857 acres, the Palmer Fire has the potential to treat 11,500 acres.  Crews have nearly completed blacklining along private property within the planning area.  Aerial ignitions may occur next week, providing conditions are favorable.  Road closures, to address public safety concerns, may be implemented next week.

Prior mechanical thinning and prescribed burns within the Palmer Fire planning area, together with the road density, are assisting fire crews by controlling the fire’s behavior and providing natural barriers. Management objectives include reducing the risk of future high-intensity catastrophic wildfires while improving range and wildlife habitat on Rowe Mesa.

Firefighter and public safety are top priorities in all wildland fire activities. Managing naturally caused fires such as the Palmer Fire provides fire managers greater control over fire effects at a lower risk.

Smoke generated by the Palmer Fire may be visible in Pecos, Rowe, Ilfeld, San Juan, San Jose and along the I-25 corridor.

Smoke will continue to be monitored to ensure that the New Mexico Environment Department’s Air Quality Bureau regulations are met. Smoke-sensitive individuals and those with respiratory or heart disease should take precautionary measures.  Information on air quality and your health is available online at the New Mexico Department of Health’s website at

For more information, contact the Pecos Ranger District at 505.757.6121.

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