Rincon Fire Update – June 14, 2021

Type 2 Incident Management Team Takes Command Tomorrow

Date Reported: June 11, 2021     Cause: Lightning     Size: 516 acres     Containment: 0%

Location: Pecos Wilderness, Pecos/Las Vegas Ranger District, Santa Fe National Forest, approximately 2 miles east of Hamilton Mesa and 6 air miles northwest of the village of Upper Rociada.

Fuels: Spruce/fir at 11,000 feet elevation. Insect infestation, primarily the spruce beetle, has killed a lot of trees in the area, which is likely to provide ample fuel and generate significant smoke.

Resources:  10-person crew, a Type 1 helicopter and a Type 2 helicopter. The Southwestern Area Incident Management Team 4, a Type 2 Incident Management Team, will assume command of the Rincon Fire at 6 a.m. Tuesday.

Operations: The Rincon Fire is burning in steep, rocky terrain at 11,000-feet elevation. Today, fire behavior is active with flames backing downslope to the Rio Mora. The challenging topography and heavy fuel load are major factors in determining suppression tactics for the Rincon Fire. The 10-person crew completed structure protection on Beatty’s Cabin today.

Weather: Hot, dry conditions continue with isolated showers and thunderstorms and gusty winds possible through Friday. Minimum humidities today are in the 12-17% range with a 20% chance of precipitation and terrain-dominated winds at 5 to 10 mph.

Values at risk: The Pecos Wilderness, multiple watersheds and riparian areas downstream from the Rincon Fire, including Rio Grande cutthroat trout habitat, the Pecos Wild and Scenic River, grazing allotments, cultural resources, the historic Beatty’s Cabin and two additional government-owned cabins used as administrative sites.

Safety: The health and safety of firefighters and the public are always the first priority. Members of the public are urged to stay away from the vicinity of the Rincon Fire. Backpackers planning to enter the Pecos Wilderness are advised to change their plans.

Restrictions and Closure Orders: A temporary flight restriction (TFR) is in place over the area, which includes unmanned aircraft, or drones. Unauthorized use of drones in a wildfire area endangers the lives of pilots and firefighters. Never fly an unmanned aircraft over or near a wildfire. See www.nifc.gov/drones for additional information on the dangers drones pose to wildland firefighting aircraft and personnel on the ground. The Santa Fe National Forest expects to implement a closure order for a portion of the Pecos Wilderness effective 6 a.m. Tuesday.

Smoke: Smoke from the Rincon Fire is visible within a 100-mile radius of the fire. An interactive smoke map at https://fire.airnow.gov/ allows you to zoom into the Santa Fe area to see the latest smoke information. 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 can be found online at the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) Environmental Public Health Tracking (EPHT) website at https://nmtracking.org/fire.

Fire updates will be posted on the SFNF website, New Mexico Fire Information website, Inciweb and on the SFNF Facebook and Twitter.          

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