Soldier Canyon Fire Update. 6/13/18 10:00 AM

Soldier Canyon Fire Morning Update June 13, 2018

Jurisdiction: Bureau of Indian Affairs, Mescalero Apache Reservation

Date/Time Detected: 6/7/2018 3:00 pm

Location: Soldier Canyon. 1 Mile North of the town of Mescalero

Firefighting Resources: 354 Personnel total. 6 Type-1 Hotshot Crews, 3 Type-2 Hand Crew,

2 Camp Crews, 1 Type-1 Helicopter, 1 Type-2 Helicopter, 2 Type-3 Helicopters. Fixed-wing aircraft as needed.

Incident Commander: Travis Pfister, Ken Roberts (trainee)

Fuel Type: Ponderosa Pine, Mixed Conifer, Pinon Juniper

Size: Approx. 1,300 Acres

Containment:  90%

Cause: Human-caused, under investigation.

Closures: Mescalero Apache Tribe has issued an official closure order for the fire area for public safety.


The Pecos Zone Type 3 Incident Management Team, led by Incident Commander Travis Pfister, assumed command of the Soldier Canyon Fire today at 6 a.m. The incident command post is located at the Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort.

Firefighters mopped-up hot spots within the fire’s perimeter and patrolled completed fireline yesterday. Crews will continue their work today, and water-dropping helicopters are available to support firefighters as needed. Unburned vegetation is burning within the fire perimeter and smoke may be visible throughout the day.

A Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) Team is assessing the fire area to identify cultural resources and erosion-prone areas.  Resource advisors are working with the BAER Team to implement strategies to prevent damage to values at risk, including homes on the west side of Highway 70.

Hot and dry conditions are expected to give way to a wet weather pattern developing over the region. As the week progresses, the chance of wetting rains is expected to increase significantly, beginning this afternoon. Hurricane Bud off the Mexico coast is being watched as it progresses north toward New Mexico. Heavy rains associated with this storm may cause mudslides and severe flooding to the fire area.

Residents living on the west side of Highway 70 are advised to prepare for possible evacuations in the event flooding becomes imminent. Tribal, state and local resources have formed a Flood Response Group that is placing sandbags and Jersey barriers in low-lying areas near homes that may be impacted by flooding. Residents are advised to stay closely informed as this weather pattern develops.

Tips for flood preparation can be found at

PUBLIC INFORMATION NUMBER  (575) 322-8792, email:

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