Gila National Forest – Buzzard Fire Update for June 2, 2018

20180602_Buzzard Fire Smoke Outlook

Fighting Fire with Fire

June 2, 2018 Daily Update


Acres:  27,223 Start Date: May 22, 2018
Cause: Human-caused Location: NE of Eagle Peak Lookout, Gila NF
Containment: 41% Fuels: Timber (litter, grass, and understory)
Total personnel: 550

General Information: One of the most important and powerful tools available to wildland firefighters in defense of landscapes and property is fire itself. Crews on the Buzzard Fire have been using fire to remove fuels along control lines to halt the spread of the main fire and help hold the lines. A night shift was reinstated so firefighters could take advantage of higher relative humidities and favorable conditions for burning operations.

Fire Operations: On the western portion, spot fires across the Eagle Peak Lookout road have become established in the 1994 HB Fire scar. Fire spread will be slow in the old fire scar; fire managers are evaluating alternate control options in this area. Crews near Cox Canyon are holding control lines and planning to conduct nighttime burnout operations to secure this portion of the fire all the way to the north fork of Negrito Creek. Crews successfully held the control lines in Sawmill Canyon between the Long Canyon road and Long Canyon ridge. Overnight, crews burned out control lines from the Long Canyon ridge south to the 4047C road, and then west along the 4047C road to the 4047A road. As crews hold this line throughout the day, the crews should be able to “turn the corner” around the head of the fire.

Fire Safety Awareness: Research shows that the majority of homes that ignite during a wildlife are the result of embers or small flames carried by the wind. Homeowners can take steps to reduce the risk, with the most important efforts occurring on and immediately around the home. There are many ways for homeowners to prepare their homes to withstand embers and minimize the likelihood of flames or surface fire touching the home. For more information on making your home “Firewise”, visit For information on current fire restrictions, please visit

 Fire Weather:  This morning’s weather will be mild and dry with a few clouds. Relative humidities will start low and drop into the single digits by the afternoon. The afternoon will be warm and breezy. Unstable weather will enter the area overnight, bringing a chance of isolated dry thunderstorms.

Closures: The area around the fire remains closed for public safety. Roadblocks have been set up by local law enforcement. In support of this closure, the Continental Divide Trail has been rerouted around the fire closures. The trail reroute map is available at More closure information is available at

Smoke Situation: Winds turning southerly this afternoon will push smoke to the north, with locations such as Grants, Quemado, Datil and Aragon being impacted late this afternoon into this evening. There will be continued overnight and morning smoke in Reserve.  Silver City, Truth or Consequences and Socorro will not be affected by smoke from the Buzzard Fire, although smoke from fires in northern Mexico may become noticeable.

Even when smoke levels are not high, smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory or heart disease are encouraged to take precautionary measures.  For more information on air quality and health impacts due to wildfire smoke, please visit the New Mexico Department of Health website at  Smoke concentration data available at:

Fire Information Links: Fire information can be found at and

For information on the Gila National Forest, please visit


Fire Information: (602) 529-5924 Office Hours: 8:00 A.M. to 8:00 P.M.
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