Gila National Forest – Update for Tadpole Fire – June 18, 2020 – Silver City Ranger District

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Fire Information Line: (575) 654-4181

Visit the New Mexico Fire Information website at

Additional Fire Information available:

Office hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 


Location:  12 miles north of Silver City               Start Date: June 6, 2020            Size:  6800 acres          

Cause:  Lightning                                             Total Personnel:157                 Containment:  30%

Vegetation:  Timber with grass understory, brush, and chaparral

Resources: Four initial attack handcrews, six Type 6 light fire engines, one Type 3 light helicopter, one Type 1 heavy helicopter. Air tankers are available at the Gila Aerial Fire Base.

SUMMARY:  The Tadpole Fire, was ignited by lightning and reported on June 6. The fire increased by 100 acres yesterday to 6,800 acres and is 30% contained. The fire is started on the SW portion of Tadpole Ridge, on the Gila National Forest. The fire is burning in timber with grass understory, brush, and chaparral.

Crews continue to hold and strengthen containment lines along the north and east flanks. As the fire backs down from TX Mountain the focus will shift to securing the NM Hwy 15 corridor, this may include aerial and hand ignitions. The fire will continue to back down Wilson Creek, however, the fire is NOT established in or near Bear Creek.

Residents of Grant County can expect to see increased smoke production over the Tadpole Fire today and may experience increased smoke impacts from other regional fires.

WEATHER: Decreased humidity and active wind resulted in increased smoke production yesterday. We are trending back to mid-June heat and dryness and are expecting elevated fire weather this afternoon. Dry and breezy to windy conditions expected through the rest of the week. Winds should slow for the weekend, but temperatures are expected to be above normal. 

FIRE BEHAVIOR: Moderate fire activity observed in Wilson Creek Drainage, fire is backing with isolated torching and short runs back into the main fire. If conditions allow aerial ignitions will occur today over the fire to secure the NM Hwy 15 corridor.

CLOSURES: The Gila National Forest has issued a closure order for the area encompassing the Tadpole Fire. The order remains in effect until August 30, 2020 or until rescinded. Additionally, NM Hwy15 will remain closed until further notice, refer to NM 511 for more information

NM DOT is cleaning out culverts and ditches along NM Hwy 15 in preparation for the monsoon season. These assessments are the basis of post-fire actions taken to ensure public safety and to determine resources necessary to prevent further damage. As the assessment progresses, further information will be provided. 

For more information follow this link or visit the Gila National Forest Website under Alerts and Notices. 

AIR QUAILITY: Air quality monitoring stations are in place and are providing smoke data and an air quality summary.  and for real time smoke monitoring data and a daily smoke summary.

Please see the New Mexico Department of Health site, for guidance on mitigating your smoke exposure.  Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory problems are encouraged to take precautionary measures by staying inside during heavy smoke periods and avoiding outdoor activities.

SAFETY:  The Gila National Forest is currently under a campfire ban, including the use of charcoal. Use of pressurized fuel devices are acceptable.

A temporary flight restriction is in place over the fire area. Wildfires are a No Drone Zone. For more information visit Know Before You Fly, .

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