Black Fire Update 5-16-22

Location of Origin: 24 miles north of Mimbres in the Gila National Forest
Start date: May 13, 2022, 9 p.m. MDT
Size: 18,762
Percent Contained: 0%
Cause: Undetermined
Resources Assigned: 141 personnel, 2 crews, 2 helicopters, 7 engines, 1 water tender

Closures: Partial closure in effect for portions of Forest Road 150, Forest Service Trails 708, 713, 716

Safety: Please use extreme caution when using a source of spark or fire. With very low humidity and gusty winds, any new wildfire start can grow very quickly.

The Black Fire has grown to 18,762 acres and is expected to have another large growth day, due to continued low humidity and wind. The fire that had spread to the east of Forest Road 150 near Meown and a new spot fire north of Meown have established in South Diamond Creek, with both making significant runs yesterday to the east and north. Due to extremely low humidity active burning continued through the night.  The fire is expected to continue to burn towards the Black range crest in the Sheep Mountain and Diamond Peak area. A Southwest Type 2 Incident Management Team has begun mobilizing to take over management of the firefighting operation. 

Crews’ focus today will be containing fire west of Forest Road 150 in the Links ranch area and securing the southern edge, keeping the fire out of Black Canyon. Large volumes of smoke and columns will be visible in the Rio Grande Valley especially in the nearby communities of Winston and Poverty Creek. Smoke is also visible from the Mimbres Valley, Gila River Valley and Silver City.

The fire is 100% suppression strategy utilizing direct, indirect and point protection strategies with ground and aerial resources.


As of May 5, the Gila National Forest has implemented STAGE 1 fire restrictions across the entire forest. More information can be found at


The fire has crossed Forest Service Road 150 north of Forest Trail 716, east of Forest Trail 713 and south of 609 Links Ranch Road.  As a result, a partial closure is in effect for portions of Forest Road 150 and for Forest Service Trails 708, 713, and 716.


Above-normal temperatures and critically low relative humidity are expected to continue today. Breezy southwest winds are expected to return but are forecast to remain below critical thresholds.  Humidity has remained very low overnight, resulting in increased fire activity overnight.

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