Fire personnel are managing a recent lightning-caused wildfire above Mogollon Rim, allowing it to fulfill its natural role and move across the landscape consuming dead and down wood, pine needles and forest fuels.
The Snake Ridge Fire, currently 125 acres, was called in by Baker Butte Lookout on Friday (5/19) and is located in a remote area approximately nine miles northwest of Clints Well. This wildfire is not a prescribed burn, but fire personnel will occasionally conduct burnout operations in specific areas to keep the fire from moving beyond certain boundaries and help direct where and how the fire moves through the landscape.
A Type 3 Incident Management Team has been assigned to the fire, which includes approximately 90 firefighters and personnel. Today, firefighters are locating and mitigating heavy fuels immediately adjacent to a powerline corridor in the area and monitoring fire progression and smoke impacts. They are also conducting burnout operations along Forest Road 81 near the powerlines in order to protect those lines from damage that could be caused by the fire.
Smoke will be much lighter than that of a severe wildfire and is not expected to impact roadways. However, smoke will be visible in the area from Lake Mary Road, state Routes 87 and 260, as well as Interstate 17.
The Snake Ridge Fire does not have a planned end date, but firefighters have determined an approximate 55,000-acre planning area within which the fire may run its natural course. However, this does not mean the fire will move across all 55,000 acres, as specific edges of the fire will be suppressed to protect certain values such as public safety, private property, cultural sites, major transmission lines, trailheads, dispersed camping sites and more. The wildfire will increase from its current size and is predicted to move across approximately 15,000 acres of land inside the determined planning area over the next two weeks as firefighters help direct where and how the fire moves through the landscape.
The forest thrives on fires such as these that are low severity and move across the forest floor. They reduce fuels and the risk of severe wildfire, create safer conditions for residents, the public and firefighters, and also restore wildlife habitat by stimulating understory vegetation growth.
SNAKE RIDGE WILDFIRE SUMMARY
Reported: May 19, 2017 at 3:02 p.m. by Baker Butte Lookout.
Location: About nine miles northwest of Clints Well; Latitude/longitude: 34 36.137, -111 27.430.
Size: 125 acres.
Resources: Fuels crew, two Hotshot crews, two engines, one dozer; Approximately 90 firefighters.
Closures/Restrictions: Currently, no main trails or roads are closed or restricted. However, closures and restrictions may change depending on the direction and movement of the fire. Closures and/or restrictions will be updated on Inciweb at https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/unit/303/
as necessary, and signs will be placed in areas of closures/restrictions to notify the public.
Smoke Impacts: Smoke will be visible in the area from Lake Mary Road, state Routes 87 and 260, as well as Interstate 17.