As part of the Forest’s ongoing strategy to reduce catastrophic wildfire danger in Rim County, Tonto National Forest fire specialists are planning four fire treatments in the Payson and Pleasant Valley Ranger Districts in the upcoming weeks.The prescribed fire will eliminate timber slash, dead and down woody debris, grass and brush.
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 Bear Fire is located ten miles southeast of Clints Well in Bear Canyon, a half mile from the edge of the Mogollon Rim. 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.
Storms brought rain and increased humidity this week on the Pinchot Fire, making conditions unfavorable for continuing perimeter burn operations. As the storms pass and conditions dry through the weekend, burn operations are expected to resume Monday, October 3, 2016.
On Monday (September 26), the incoming storms shifted the prevailing winds from the typical southwest pattern to northeast. This dispersed smoke from Monday's burn operations towards the towns of Pine and Strawberry.
Pinchot Fire crews did a test burn on Sunday and determined that sufficient drying had occurred thus allowing for a successful ignition planned for Monday. Fire was kept on the west side of Forest Road 139A consuming heavy dead and down fuels. The fire began to creep into Bear Canyon with no holding concerns.