fire

The Castle Fire continues to grow along the northeast portion of the planning area. The fire is backing along the forest floor and occasionally flaming up in areas where there are dense pockets of dead and down logs.

The lightning-caused wildfire, which is being allowed to fulfill its natural role in a fire-dependent ecosystem, is approximately 600 acres within a predetermined planning area of 19,368 acres. It is located about 11 miles south of Jacob Lake, 3 miles west of Highway 67, and just east of Forest Road 761 near Oquer Canyon.

Coconino County, in coordination with the Southwest Area Type 1 Incident Command Team and the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office will host a community meeting at 6 p.m., Thursday, May 3 at the Winslow High School, 600 E. Cherry Ave., Winslow, Ariz. This meeting will provide re-entry information to residents displaced by the fire.

To protect public health and safety due to increasing fire danger, the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests (ASNFs) will implement stage II fire restrictions effective Friday, May 4, at 12:01 a.m. These additional fire restrictions will remain in effect until forest officials determine that conditions have changed sufficiently to reduce the risk of human-caused wildfire. No campfires are allowed until stage II fire restrictions are lifted.
 
Stage II fire restrictions prohibit the following:

The National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning for today from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. that covers Arizona, including all of the Tonto National Forest, due to strong winds and low relative humidity.

Visitors to the Tonto National Forest are advised to refrain from having a campfire when Red Flag Warning conditions exist.  This advisory covers all campfires across the affected area, including in developed campgrounds.

Following the Copley Fire, which occurred April 8, County officials are encouraging all residents to sign-up to receive emergency notifications at coconino.az.gov/ready. Emergency Notifications have proven to save lives.

The fire started in the area of North Copley Dr., an unincorporated area of Coconino County, east of Flagstaff, Ariz. According to the Summit Fire Department, the Copley Fire reached approximately 80 plus acres. Several structures were lost and approximately 75 residents were evacuated during the fire.

Heavy wooded areas ignited by the Gate 13 Fire this week are still burning today at Camp Navajo. 

Rain and snow has reduced some burning timber to smolders; however, the moisture and cold temperatures have created mud and ice on the roads.

Camp Navajo Fire Department is reporting no issues at this point and will continue to monitor the fire until it is 100 percent extinguished.

Incident command for the Gate 13 Fire is scheduled to downsize from an integrated team of Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management and Arizona Department of Emergency and Military Affairs personnel to Camp Navajo Fire Department tomorrow morning. 

This decision comes with reports of 75 percent containment of the fire and a weather forecast favorable to fire suppression for the rest of the week.

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