Hermits Peak and Calf Canyon Fires

May 4, 2022, Daily Update, 09:00AM

Acres: 160,104 acres – Containment: 20% – Total personnel: 1,208

Start Date: Hermits Peak: April 6, 2022; Calf Canyon: April 19, 2022

Cause: Hermits Peak: spot fires from prescribed burn; Calf Canyon: under investigation

Location: Located near Gallinas Canyon – Fuels: Heavy mixed conifer, ponderosa pine, brush, and grass

Highlights: A steady aerial assault on the fire yesterday provided opportunity for firefighters to engage aggressively on the ground. Structure protection, line construction and firing operations will continue today. Please respect all closures and allow firefighting resources to work safely. Firefighter and public safety will continue to be the number one priority.

Operations: Firefighters continued defensive firing operations yesterday to remove fuels near structures and secure line. Air resources flew all day in support of these missions. There is an anticipated increase in fire activity in multiple locations across the fire as winds shift throughout the day. Six Structure Groups across the fire will focus efforts on removing fuels, constructing line and deploying other protection measures around homes and communities. Structure Groups are populated with protection resources in every division of the fire. These resources will be working anywhere that homes, cabins and other values at risk are threatened, moving between areas of increased fire activity throughout the day. Crews will continue firing operations, removing fuel between containment lines and the uncontrolled fire front to slow fire spread. Numerous helicopters, LATs (Large Air Tankers) and VLATs (Very Large Air Tankers), as well as six scooper planes continue to deliver water and retardant to the fireline. As a reminder, the scooper planes are dipping water out of Lake Isabel which is on private property. No public is allowed in this area. The Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) zone in place over the fire area was expanded to include the City of Las Vegas and the Las Vegas airport. The zone also restricts the flight of unmanned aircraft, or drones. If a private drone intrudes into the fire area, it will require a pause in all air operations and impede firefighting progress, putting firefighters at greater risk.

Evacuations: Scan the QR code here for the latest evacuation map or visit the ArcGIS Map. The San Miguel and Mora County Sheriffs ask that all residents within the fire area remain on high alert for changes to evacuation statuses and road closures. It is imperative to respect closures and follow evacuation orders. Please follow San Miguel County and Mora County Sheriff’s Facebook pages for the latest updates at https://www.facebook.com/smcso.nm and https://www.facebook.com/moracountysheriffoffice.

Weather: A Red Flag Warning is in effect from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm. Southwest to west winds in the morning of 15 to 20 mph will become west to northwest at 22 to 27 mph in the afternoon. Wind gusts will be between 35 and 40 mph. Maximum temperatures will top out in the lower 50s to mid 60s. Minimum relative humidity values will be 8 to 15 %.

Restrictions: The Santa Fe National Forest has expanded the closure order due to the fire to include the entire Pecos/Las Vegas Ranger District and has implemented forest-wide Stage 2 fire restrictions. Full closure order and map are available at www.fs.usda.gov/detail/santafe/alerts-notices/?cid=stelprd3802009.

Smoke: Communities on the east and immediate south sides of the fire will see the greatest reduction in air quality. The Las Vegas Valley will see Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups (USG) today becoming Unhealthy into tonight. Mora will average USG with periods of Unhealthy late afternoon into tonight with winds pushing smoke eastward. Air quality around Rociada, Pendaries and Buena Vista should improve somewhat by late afternoon with cleaner west to northwest wind. The NM Highway 518 corridor will generally have USG to periods of Unhealthy into tonight. An interactive smoke map at https://fire.airnow.gov/ allows you to zoom into your area to see the latest smoke conditions.

Future Fire Information: The Calf Canyon Fire and Hermit Peak Fire Information office hours are 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM.  The phone number for fire information is 505-356-2636. The email address is 2022.calfcanyon@firenet.gov. Future fire information will continue to be posted on Inciweb, the SFNF Facebook and Twitter, SFNF website, and New Mexico Fire Information website.

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