As drying conditions persist through the weekend, Valentine Fire crews are actively assessing fuel consumption and strategically planning for both hand and aerial ignition operations, with Friday's activities revealing drier conditions in certain ridges compared to drainages, whilw Saturday's focus remains on continued fuel consumption testing and identifying favorable opportunities for aerial ignitions along the western ridges
Operations: Friday, crews on the western border of the fire went in to test consumption of fuels with hand ignition. Some of the ridges showed to be drier than some of the drainages. Crews on the southeast corner scouted the area to familiarize and check for evenness of fire progression along the 411 road. Today, crews will continue to test consumption of fuels and look for good opportunities to tie in aerial ignitions on some of the ridges to the west.
Fire Ecology: Plants and plant communities develop adaptations to specific ecological conditions. In areas with historically short fire return intervals (high fire frequency) plants have adapted not only to survive fire but to take advantage of fire, and they do better when there are frequent fires. The kind of fire (frequency, severity) that a plant can survive varies widely based on the species, and depending on the types of adaptations they have developed. For example, mature ponderosa has thick bark (insulation), grows tall (keeps the growing tips of the branches out of the fire) and naturally drops its lower branches (self-pruning).
Weather: Friday was fairy dry as most of the thunderstorms remained to the north and did not pass over the fire area. Today will be similar with a better chance of warming up, staying dry, and a slight drop in humidity. Going into Sunday we may see an increased chance of afternoon showers.
Closures: An emergency closure order for the Valentine Fire will go into effect 6 a.m. Sept. 5, 2023. The public is asked to avoid the fire area. The purpose of the closure order is to protect public health and safety during the Valentine Fire, and to protect assigned firefighting personnel engaging in wildland firefighting operations. Signs and gates will be in place to remind the public not to enter the fire area. Please visit the Alerts and Notices page for more information. https://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/tonto/alerts-notices.
Safety: The health and safety of firefighters, and the public are always the highest priority. Members of the public are asked to avoid the fire area.
Smoke: Smoke from the Valentine Fire may be visible in the surrounding areas for many days. Smoke will be heavier in the mornings as it settles into the lower elevations and will lift as temperatures increase. Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory problems or heart disease are encouraged to take precautionary measures An interactive smoke map at https://fire.airnow.gov/ allows you to zoom into your area to see the latest smoke conditions.
- Size: 2,881 acres
- Start Date: August 16, 2023
- Cause: Lightning
- Containment: 49%
- Total personnel: 177
- Location: 11 miles northeast of Young, Arizona and 27 miles east of Payson, Arizona
Information Links and Contacts:
Tonto National Forest https://www.fs.usda.gov/main/tonto/fire(link is external)(link is external)
InciWeb https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident-information/aztnf-valentine-fire(link is external)(link is external)
Fire Email [email protected](link sends e-mail)(link sends e-mail)
Fire Information Line (928) 421-4579 • Office Hours: 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM