Sardinas Canyon Fire – July 8, 2018 Update

Acres: Approximately 2,337 acres

Percent Containment: 21%

Start Date: June 24, 2018, 2:09 pm

Cause: Human, under investigation

Jurisdiction: Carson National Forest, Camino Real Ranger District

Fuels: Aspen, high altitude mixed conifer, and sub-alpine fir

Origin Location: Sardinas Canyon, 18 miles southeast of Taos, New Mexico

Resources: 60 personnel, 4 engines, 1 dozer, 1 rapid extraction module, and 1 excavator

Multiple storms with rain and hail scattered over the fire yesterday, with light to moderate rain fall. Fire behavior remained minimal and no longer produced visible smoke to the surrounding communities. Partly Cloudy with isolated showers and thunderstorm in the morning, then mostly cloudy with thunderstorms in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 20 percent increasing to 60 percent in the afternoon.

A community meeting is planned for Thursday July 12 at 5:30pm at the Peñasco Community Center at 14136 NM-75, Peñasco, NM 87553. Carson National Forest Staff and Fire Managers will be on hand to answer questions about the Sardinas Canyon fire and post suppression activities.

Chipping operations will continue today, contingent on the weather and ability to move equipment on increasingly wetter roads.  An excavator has been brought in for dozer line repair work.  Crews completed hand line restoration around the La Junta Summer Homes. Crews also started rehabbing lines and are inserting water bars where appropriate. Firefighters continue to monitor perimeter to ensure lines are holding.

A Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) Team has been created to gather information to evaluate potential threats to public safety, life and National Federal System property associated with post-fire conditions. This team is assessing preventative treatments and emergency stabilization for fire related problems such as soil erosion, flooding and increased sedimentation as a result from loss of vegetation. The BAER process begins by determining and implementing actions that will limit threats to human life and safety. Additionally, the team will evaluate how potential flooding will affect roads and developed campsites downstream, such as Upper La Junta and Duran Campgrounds.

The Carson National Forest is closed, prohibiting public access to the forest (with the exception of the Jicarilla Ranger District, Eagle Rock Lake and Mallette Park on the Questa Ranger District will remain open during daylight hours).  Forest conditions and weather forecasts continue to be monitored daily. Your patience is appreciated.  Additional closure information can be found on the Carson National Forest webpage:

Investigation is ongoing; however, the fire has been determined to be human caused. Details will be made available by law enforcement once the investigation is completed.

Sardinas Canyon Fire Info:




Public Line: (575) 737-8784 (8 a.m. to 8 p.m.)

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