Natural lightning caused fires have started across the forest with the return of significant monsoon activity to northern Arizona.
On both the Tusayan and Williams Ranger Districts, fire managers are taking advantage of good conditions to allow some of these natural fires to benefit the forest and surrounding communities.
“With recent deep moisture, we feel confident in a quick transition from extreme fire danger and the associated full suppression fire management strategies to managing natural fire to benefit our resources” says District Fire Management Officer, James Pettit. Resource benefit fires are managed for multiple objectives including reducing accumulated forest litter and fuels, maintaining fire in a fire-adapted ecosystem, increasing firefighter and public safety, and protecting cultural resources and wildlife habitat.
Williams Ranger District: Currently 1 acre in size, the Duck Fire is located approximately 3 miles northwest of Parks, Ariz. To plan for fire growth, officials have identified a specific planning area of approximately 5,300 acres in which the fire could spread.
Fire managers anticipate 1-2 acre growth potential each day over the next several days. Smoke may be visible from I-40.
Tusayan Ranger District: Currently 5 acres in size, the McRae Fire is located approximately 5 miles southeast of Tusayan, Ariz. To plan for fire growth, officials have identified a specific planning area of approximately 11,000 acres in which the fire could spread.
Fire managers anticipate 5-10 acre growth potential each day over the next several days. Crews may conduct 25 acres of perimeter road ignitions along the FSR 688 and FSR305 for firefighter and public safety. If managed ignitions occur, smoke may become highly visible from Highway 64.
While varying monsoonal precipitation and winds are likely to change fire behavior and growth over the next several days, general fire behavior is anticipated to be low intensity with 6-12 inch flame lengths. Reported fire behavior includes creeping, smoldering, and backing fire.
For fire activity updates, call the Fire Information Line at 928-635-8311 or visit inciweb.nwcg.gov.