Conejos Fire Update – Aug. 6, 2019

SANTA FE, NM – Aug. 6, 2019 – A drier-than-expected Monday gave fire crews the opportunity to resume firing operations yesterday and complete an additional 40 acres on the east side of the Conejos Fire. The plan for today is to take advantage of a break in the weather to continue firing operations today and tomorrow as conditions allow to remove heavy concentrations of dead and down fuels within the Conejos Fire perimeter.

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: 225 acres

Fuels: Primarily ponderosa pine

Resources on scene: Type 4 Incident Commander, district fire personnel, Santa Fe County Fire Department’s Black Canyon hand crew, one Type 6 engine and one Type 3 engine

Current status: Crews will monitor the Conejos Fire and continue firing operations as monsoonal weather patterns allow through the rest of the week.

Weather: Scattered showers and thunderstorms in in the afternoon with winds out of the southeast at 5-10 mph and temperatures in the 80s.

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

The Santa Fe National Forest (SFNF) can take advantage of natural ignitions like the Conejos Fire to improve conditions on the ground by getting rid of woody material and debris on the forest floor. Fire managers plan to complete the Conejos Fire’s 800-acre perimeter, achieving resource benefits by strategically reintroducing fire to a fire-adapted forest ecosystem. 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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Photo Caption: Firing operations add low-intensity flames to the Conejos Fire to reduce dead and down fuels and improve forest health.  Credit: USDA Forest Service

 

 

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