Saturday, August 11, 2012

Update on recent lightning caused fires in Tonto National Forest

Multiple Lightning Starts on Tonto National Forest
Most fires showing no smoke today
Date reported: Aug. 8, 2012
Size range:  .10 to 280 acres
Causes: Under investigation (major cause believed to be lightning)

Location/wildfire names:
Globe Ranger District
  • “Pickett” – .8 acres. Contained and controlled.  
  • “Mesa” Fire (Salt River Canyon Wilderness) – 2 acres, no smoke.
Mesa Ranger District
  • “Woodbury” – 280 acres (in Superstition Wilderness), inaccessible and remote terrain. No smoke.
  • “Granite” - .10 acre.  No smoke.
Payson Ranger District: 
  • “Houston” (SW section of Hellsgate Wilderness) - 3 acres, steep and inaccessible terrain.  No smoke.
Pleasant Valley Ranger District:
  • “McFadden” – 9 acres.  Mormon Lake Hot Shot crew and 1 engine expect containment this evening.
Tonto Basin Ranger District: 
·        “Mistake” – 200 acres, Sacramento/ Hot Shots, 2 Type 2 crews, 1 type 6 engine and local resources assigned.   Santa Fe Hot Shots en route.  Rough, inaccessible country.  Heavier fuels:  juniper, brush.
Today’s growth is due to ongoing above-normal temperatures which are accelerating the reduced fuel moisture.   

Resources committed:

1 air attack planes monitoring fires.
3 Hot Shot crews - Mormon Lake (McFadden fire); Sacramento (Mistake).  Sante Fe Hotshots en route.
2 Type 2 crews (Mistake fire):  San Carlos; Fort Apache Agency
Type 6 engines (Mistake fire)
                 Due to storms which went through a good portion of the Tonto National Forest Wednesday afternoon, there are approximately 7 confirmed lightning fire starts on five of the six forest ranger districts, ranging in size from .10 to 280 acres.
                 Most of the incidents are showing little to no activity or smoke.  The Mistake Fire, however, was very active today, growing from 70 to 200 acres.  Additional resources have been ordered.
                 Two Hot Shot crews and two Type 2 crews are dedicated to the suppression efforts.  Some current resources may be re-assigned to the Mistake Fire and the Santa Fe Hotshots are en route. 
                 The record-breaking temperatures continue to be of concern for firefighter safety, and are accelerating the reduction of fuel moisture despite the recent monsoon rains.   
                 For more information, please contact the Tonto National Forest at (602) 225-5200, or check online at

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