Yesterday crews made progress securing and improving the Highway 188 corridor from Tonto Basin north to the Highway 87 intersection. Firefighters continue to use sing a range of tactics to fully suppress the fire. They are working to protect values at risk including nearby communities, state highways, communication sites and power lines.
Firefighters will continue to use burnout operations, supported by aerial resources as needed, where they can do so safely and effectively. Expect to see smoke as firefighters are burning along the SR 87 / Beeline Highway to create a buffer for fire backing downslope from the top of Mount Ord. They are using aerial ignition to help slowly back the fire downslope to help minimize fire severity and post-fire impacts in the area. On the southeast side, smoke will also be visible as an fire continues to burn a large pocket of unburned vegetation within the fire’s interior. Today structure protection groups will continue to focus on patrolling the communities along Highway 188.
- Acres: 174, 397 acres (based on infrared flight)
- Percent Containment: 7%
- Start Date: Saturday, June 13, 2020
- Cause: Human-caused
- Origin Location: 22 miles NE of Mesa, AZ
- Fuels: Tall grass and brush
- Resources: 769 total including 11 Type 1 Crews; 8 Type 2 Crews; 41 Engines; 5 bulldozers; 19 water tenders; 7 helicopters
Evacuation information: Brownsville, Jake's Corner, Slate Creek, Pioneer Pass, Tonto Basin, Punkin Center, Sunflower, and residents and visitors to Apache Lake remain under “Go” evacuation notices. Gisela, Rye, Deer Creek 76 Ranch and Bar T Bar Ranch (AKA BT Ranch) are in “Set” status. All residents in the area are encouraged to be prepared and stay alert to rapidly changing conditions. An evacuation and shelter info map is available at https://tinyurl.com/bushfirepublicinfo. Visit Maricopa County https://ready.maricopa.gov/ and Gila County: www.readygila.com/ for more information.
American Red Cross Evacuation Centers are located at the Payson Senior Center 514 West Main Street, Payson, AZ 85541 and the Lee Kornegay Intermediate School at 4635 Railroad Ave, Miami, AZ 85539.
The largest potential for smoke impacts is expected in the afternoon moving along the Mogollon Rim from Payson mid-day East to Heber Overgaard later into the day. https://fires.airfire.org/outlooks/CentralArizona.
Visit https://az511.com/ or call 511 for current road closure information. State Route 87 is closed from Payson (milepost 251) to Bush Highway (milepost 199). State Route 188 is closed between SR 87 (milepost 276) and Roosevelt Lake at milepost 243. In addition, State Route 88 is closed between Apache Lake (milepost 229) to State Route 188 (milepost 242). The long-term SR 88 closure from east of Tortilla Flat to Apache Lake also remains in effect.
The Tonto National Forest has an area closure surrounding the Bush Fire. Fire restrictions remain in place. Details are available at https://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/tonto/alerts-notices. Saguaro Del Norte and Saguaro Lake Marina are now open for recreation use. These sights will ONLY be accessible via Bush highway; there is no access off State Highway 87 at this time. Once boat parking is at capacity, vehicles towing boats WILL BE TURNED AWAY at the entrance.
Wildfires are a No Drone Zone. If you fly, we can’t. Every time a drone is spotted near the fire all aircraft are grounded until we can be sure the drone is clear of this area. More info visit http://knowbeforeyoufly.org.