Patience is requested during evacuations as the Backbone Fire remains a threat. Moderate rains were experienced around the fire area providing opportunities for the firefighters to limit the rate of spread. The Backbone Fire is 1 percent contained and continues to be one of many wildfires burning in hot, dry conditions across Arizona.
Fire activity in the southwest corner is minimal, although the fire has moved it remains on the east side of the Verde River. Primary and secondary control lines have been completed on Wingfield Mesa and fire crews continue to improve those lines. Additional contingency lines have also been completed near Beasley Flat and Verde Lakes. Firefighters continue to prepare State Route 260 and State Route 87 for future firing operations. In the areas where burning operations occurred, crews are monitoring for hotspots and continue to mop up near containment lines.
Public Land Closures:
An emergency area fire closure has been issued to protect public health and safety from fire activities. All Tonto, Coconino, and Prescott National Forest lands, roads, and trails in the area of the Backbone Fire are closed. Full details of area and road closures are available on the Backbone Fire Inciweb page at: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/7545/
State Route 260 is closed between Camp Verde and state Route 87. State Route 87 is closed north of Payson to Clints Well. Motorists are advised to visit https://www.az511.com for current road closures before traveling. Arizona Public Service Co. (APS) is working closely with the agencies responding to wildfires across the state. While there has been some impact to APS infrastructure due to the Backbone Fire, there are no customers without power at this time because of fire activity and disruption in service is not currently anticipated. APS is monitoring fire progress and will coordinate with emergency response agencies in the event there is a need to take power lines out of service to protect firefighters and/or if the fire or smoke impacts electrical infrastructure. APS customers can visit aps.com/outagecenter for information on how to be prepared for an outage and to view the APS outage map. Weather: Gusty and erratic winds from outflow will be possible but wetting rain remains low.
Evacuation orders were issued for the communities of Pine and Strawberry. Residents and visitors should contact their county or visit https://ein.az.gov/ready-set-go for information regarding evacuation status.
No Drone Zone: A temporary flight restriction remains in place over the Backbone Fire. Fire Danger Remains Extreme. National Forest closures are in affect on the Kaibab and Coconino as of June 23,, Apache-Sitgreaves June 24 and Prescott June 25. Tonto National Forest will implement a Forest Closure on June 25. Check for fire restrictions or information on fire activity around Arizona at: https://wildlandfire.az.gov/
Acres: 38,328 acres
Percent Containment: 1%
Start Date: June 16, 2021 Cause: Lightning
Origin Location: Approximately 12 miles west of Pine and Strawberry, Arizona
Fuels: Pinyon Juniper, Chaparral, Brush, Grass, Cactus Personnel Assigned: 590
Fire personnel ask for patience as fire continues to burn