Pinery Fire update: 60% contained

May 15, 2018 - 3:02 pm

The latest Pinery Fire Update is now posted on

Pinery Fire 60% Contained

Date/Time Reported: reported Saturday, May 12th, around 1:30pm

Location: Approximately 29 miles SE of Willcox, AZ. The fire started on private land, and has moved to the north and east onto Chiricahua National Monument and the Coronado National Forest.

Estimated Size: approximately 1,200 acres

Containment: 60%

Cause: human caused, under investigation

Resources: Demobilization of resources no longer needed occurred May 15. The Type 3 incident management organization will transition to a smaller, local Type 4 incident management organization on Wednesday, May 16. Approximately 150 personnel will remain including (3) hotshot crews (Bitteroot, Mesa, and Geronimo), (4) Type 2 handcrews, (1) engine, (2) chippers and various support personnel.

Fuels: The fire is burning in the footprint of the 2011 Horseshoe 2 Fire, in an area with heavy grass, brush and dead and down vegetation. There is mixed conifer in higher elevations.

Weather: Dry conditions with occasional afternoon gusts will prevail this week. A gradual daily warming trend will occur through Thursday followed by temperatures returning closer to seasonal normals next weekend with breezy afternoons expected Thursday and Friday.

Summary: Ground and aerial resources are taking suppression actions where they can do so safely and effectively. There have been no structures lost and no injuries.

The fire continues to smolder. The fire is hung up on cliffs and rocky outcroppings on ridgetops, and has not progressed further north into Chiricahua National Monument. No additional growth is expected.

Firefighters continue to construct direct line and extinguishing hotspots along the north and northeast portion of the fire perimeter. The south, west and east perimeters remain quiet. Firefighters are mopping up, monitoring and patrolling these area for hotspots. A helicopter dropped water to help cool hotspots on May 15. Crews will be chipping cut vegetation from structural prep work in the Chiricahua National Monument headquarters area for several days. 

Objectives: Firefighters are working to hold the fire north of FR 42, south of the 181 Road in Chiricahua National Monument, and west of the North Fork of Pinery on the FR356.

Challenges: There fire is burning in Wilderness, in remote, steep, rugged terrain. There are limited water sources in the area. Warmer, drier weather and high winds are expected to continue.

Structures Threatened: The fire remains approximately one mile south of park infrastructure including headquarters buildings, employee housing, a campground and the historic Faraway Ranch in Chiricahua National Monument. The Sugarloaf Lookout tower is also located in Chiricahua National Monument. The fire is located approximately 7 miles west of the community of Paradise, AZ and approximately 5 miles southwest of private inholdings in Whitetail Canyon. There is also one house at the Coronado National Forest Pinery Administrative site.

Evacuations: As of May 14, at 9pm, the Cochise County Sheriff's Office has returned all areas on "SET" protocols (Paradise and the White Tail Canyon) to "READY" status . Follow for current evacuation information. Register for Cochise County Emergency Alerts at

Closures: Chiricahua National Monument remains closed at this time for public safety.

Restrictions: Stage II Fire Restrictions are in effect across Southern Arizona.

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 Know Before You Fly