Firefighter safety is the top priority of the Cow Canyon fire and due to the very steep and hazardous terrain, and remote access, there is limited opportunity for direct actions, however, firefighters continue to monitor and assess the fire for opportunities to engage.
Operations: Fire crews have been busy over the last few days constructing fire line, clearing brush and prepping for potential burnout operations to protect structures in the Blue River from being impacted by the fire. Aerial observations show no fire movement near Bear Mountain, and only minimal fire activity overall. Most of the recent growth has taken place on the New Mexico side of the fire which experienced additional acreage yesterday. Crews will continue to construct fire line along the Pueblo Park road on the northern containment line. Prep work is also being conducted to protect range improvement Polypipe lines that provide vital water to wildlife and cattle.
News: Yesterday, type 3 Incident Commander Aaron Salazar assumed command of the Cow Canyon fire to meet the growing complexity of firefighting operations. The Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests enacted stage 1 fire restrictions today to reduce the risk of human-caused wildfires during periods of high fire danger and severe fire weather conditions. The forest order for stage 1 fire restrictions can be found at https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/asnf/alerts-notices/?cid=stelprd3793918. The next update on the Cow Canyon fire will be on October 13, 2020, unless fire conditions and activity warrant otherwise.
Values at risk: Primary objectives are to provide protection for private property, cultural resources and historical sites, including Franz Cabin and Bear Mountain Lookout that are no longer threatened.
Closures: Some recreational trails are closed for public health and safety due to wildland fire activities along the trails. The affected trails, temporary closure order and map can be found at https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/asnf/alerts-notices/?cid=stelprd3793918.
Weather: Sunny today with a high near 80 degrees. Southwest winds 8 to 17 mph, with gusts as high as 26 mph.
Safety: Smoke may be visible in Springerville, Alpine, Clifton, and western New Mexico. Air quality can be found on the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality’s webpage at https://azdeq.gov/.
Information: Updates can be found on the official incident page at https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/7158/.
Location of Origin: Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests, Alpine Ranger District
Start Date: August 18, 2020
Size: Approximately 20,400 Acres
Percent Contained: 12
Resources Assigned: 5