Lincoln National Forest, Crooked Creek fire update June 24

Due to the remote location and rugged terrain on the Crooked Creek fire, construction of direct fireline has not been possible and would compromise firefighter safety. Firefighters established a planned perimeter further out from the fires’ edge using existing roads and terrain features to construct indirect fireline over the past several days.

On Sunday, June 23, crews conducted burnout operations within that planned perimeter using hand and aerial ignitions. The burnout operation was successful in keeping the fire within the indirect fireline with the exception of the northeast corner of the fire. An unexpected wind shift and stronger than predicted winds caused the fire to spot over the indirect line to the northeast where it reached the forest boundary and moved into Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land. In this area, the fire is approximately one half mile from Sargent Canyon. Due to the burnout operations and spot fires, the size of the fires is now approximately 5,740 acres.

Yesterday, a very large airtanker, a Type 1 airtanker, and a Single Engine Airtanker (SEAT) dropped fire retardant on the northeast corner of the fire and crews also made good progress on the west side of the spot fires which have now joined together.

Today, firefighters and airtankers will focus on the northeast corner and east flank of the fire. Crews will also further secure the west and south sides of the fire which have solid blackline and containment of 25 percent. Hot and dry conditions are predicted for today which has potential to increase fire activity.

Increased smoke is expected today from yesterday’s burnout operation and from the likelihood of increased fire behavior. 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.

Jurisdiction: Guadalupe Ranger District, Lincoln National Forest

Date/Time Detected: June 15, 2018, 11:16 am

Location: Crooked Canyon

Lat/Long: 32 30.462, -105 1.590

Firefighting Resources:  approximately 140 total personnel; two type 1 crews, one type 2 hand crew, two water tenders, and four type 6 engines have been ordered.

Values at Risk: None

Fuel Type:  Grass with open Piñon-Juniper

Size: Approximately 5,740 acres

Cause: Lightning

PIO: Denise Ottaviano, 505-219-5784, dottaviano@fs.fed.us

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