Gila NF: Johnson Fire Update for June 26, 2021

Saturday, June 26, 2021

Visit the New Mexico Fire Information website at


Fire Phone 575-519-0103     Email: 


Location: Wilderness Ranger District, Gila National Forest      Start Date: May 20, 2021      Size:  88420 acres          

Cause:  Lightning   Vegetation:  Timber with grass understory, pinyon and juniper woodlands, scrub and brush  

Total Personnel: 136    Containment:  24%

Resources:  1 Type 1 handcrew, 2 Type 2 handcrews, 1 type 3 helicopter, 8 engines and 3 water tenders

SUMMARY:  Crews will assess and monitor the fire activity around Seventy-Four Mountain and West Mogollon Creek.  This area is visible from the communities of Mangus, Cliff, Buckhorn, and Gila. A reconnaissance flight is planned for an aerial assessment of the fire. Helicopter bucket work may occur in the Seventy-Four Mountain and West Mogollon Creek areas if warranted, depending on fire activity. Fisheries Biologists and fire personnel will remove Gila trout from fire affected streams via helicopter today.  Fish will be relocated to the Mora Fish Hatchery until affected streams are deemed safe again, at which time the fish will be returned to streams. Gila trout evacuations are common on the Gila National Forest and are implemented to maintain and preserve the original genetic lineage of the species.

INCIDENT OBJECTIVES: Provide for firefighter and public safety and allow fire to play its natural role on the landscape. Values at risk are the Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument, White Creek Cabin, and sensitive aquatic species in the Gila Wilderness.

FIRE BEHAVIOR: Moderate to light, with areas of backing and creeping.

CLOSURE: Due to hazardous fire conditions in the Johnson Fire area, an Emergency Area Closure order has been issued by the Gila National Forest for public health and safety. A large portion of the Gila Wilderness is CLOSED.  For a copy of the order and maps see:

As a reminder “The Celebration Site-Skates area,” Johnson Fire Camp is closed to the public. For further information call 575-536-2250 (M-F 8:00 – 4:00 p.m.) or 575-519-0103 (any time before 7:00 p.m.)

WEATHER: Dry this morning, with increasing relative humidity for the afternoon. Temperatures expected to be 80-85 for the fire area, with a 10% chance of rain later this afternoon. Relative humidity expected to be 17-20%.

AIR QUALITY: All areas surrounding the Johnson Fire should see good air quality with the possible exception of Truth or Consequences, NM which will see good degrading to moderate.  Please follow this link to provide you with real time smoke monitoring, simply find the monitor closest to your location: https://app.air- The New Mexico Department of Health site also known as 5-3-1, provides 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 Stage 1 Fire Restriction, including the use of charcoal grills. Use of pressurized fuel devices with an on/off switch are acceptable.  For more information visit the Gila National Forest website under Alerts and Notices.

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