Conejos Fire Update – Aug. 1, 2019

SANTA FE, NM – Aug. 1, 2019 – A thunderstorm that dropped significant moisture on the north end of the Conejos Fire yesterday has delayed operations planned for today. Fire managers are monitoring conditions on the ground for a window to begin firing operations.

Start date: July 29, 2019

Cause: Lightning

Location: Conejos Peak on the Jemez Ranger District adjacent to Forest Road 266 about 4 miles northeast of the Paliza Campground and 5 miles from the community of Ponderosa.

Size: 45 acres

Fuels: Primarily ponderosa pine

Resources on scene: Type 4 Incident Commander, one Hotshot crew, one Type 2 initial attack crew, Santa Fe County Fire Department’s Black Canyon hand crew, Jemez Pueblo’s Jemez Eagles Type 2 crew, two Type 6 engines and miscellaneous overhead.

Current status: The Conejos Fire is burning through heavy fuels, backing down slopes and removing ladder fuels from an area that has not seen fire in a long time. Fire crews continue working on containment lines.

Weather: Scattered showers and thunderstorms throughout the day with winds out of the southwest at 10-15 mph. A backdoor front is expected to move into the area tomorrow, increasing the chance of wetting storms over the weekend.

Predicted smoke impact: Smoke is visible from US Highway 550, San Ysidro and Jemez Pueblo.

The Santa Fe National Forest (SFNF) plans to manage the Conejos Fire for multiple resource benefits, including improved forest health, reduced fuel loadings and improved wildlife habitat. Naturally occurring fires that burn with lower intensity under favorable conditions help reintroduce fire to fire-dependent forest ecosystems. Firefighter and public safety is always the first priority on all wildland fire incidents.

Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory problems or heart disease are encouraged to take precautionary measures. Information on air quality and protecting your health by using the 5-3-1 visibility method can be found online at the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) Environmental Public Health Tracking (EPHT) website at https://nmtracking.org/fire. People with health concerns can also call NMDOH at 505-827-0006 for additional information. For information on the HEPA filter loan program, go to https://facnm.org/smoke#smokeanchor5.

Fire updates are posted on the New Mexico Fire Information website at www.nmfireinfo.com, www.facebook.com/SantaFeNF and Twitter @SantafeNF. For additional information about the Conejos Fire, please contact the Jemez Ranger District at 575-829-3535.

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