Today is the last day on the Backbone Fire for Southwest Area Incident Command Team #1. On Thursday morning, management of the fire will be turned back to the local units, a smaller organization that will continue with suppression repair work. There is a 75% chance of rain today. Firefighters will be working the fire’s edge looking for any remaining hot spots and transporting excess supplies and equipment from containment lines to their fire camp. Crews are also finishing chipping debris along the corridor of State Route 260.
Today begins a trend towards cooler and wetter conditions, which will moderate fire behavior and aid suppression efforts. Fire crews will be working the fire’s edge looking for any remaining hot spots. They are being supported by drones with infrared and aircraft conducting bucket drops as needed. Crews are also finishing chipping debris along the corridor of State Routes 260 and 87. Firefighters will continue suppression repair work across the fire area.
Today at 4 p.m., the Gila County Sheriff’s Office removed the “GO!” order for residents of Strawberry and Hunt Ranch and they can return home but remain on “Set” status and should be prepared to evacuate if the fire situation changes. Fire crews spent the day working the fire’s edge looking for any remaining hot spots. They are being supported by drones with infrared and aircraft conducted bucket drops as needed. Crews are also working on chipping debris along the corridor of State Routes 260 and 87.
This evening the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office and the Camp Verde Marshal’s Office announced that Beasley Flats and Verde Lakes are no longer in a “Ready” status. Residents are encouraged to continue to follow fire information. Crews on the fire were able to get to the fire’s edge and construct direct line in a number of locations. Aircraft continue to support ground crews as needed. On the east side of the fire, crews continued work on a direct fire line on Deadman Mesa and Hardscrabble Canyon. They also began constructing direct line in Fossil Creek.
There will be a community meeting tomorrow, Saturday, June 26, 2021, 5:30 pm, at the Expedition Church, 301 S. Colcord Rd, Payson Arizona. The meeting is open to the public and live streamed on the Incident Facebook Page
Today, Backbone Fire crews are adapting to yesterday’s weather and moving resources around with the priority to go direct on the fires edge. The fire’s containment increased to 6 percent. Containment applies to the percent of the overall perimeter that operations feel confident it will not grow beyond. The current containment is from the Child’s Power Plant to the southern tip of the fire.
Light rain was received on the Backbone Fire today. The next few days will see a warming and drying pattern accompanied by increasing wind speeds. On the east side of the fire, crews began work on a direct fire line on Deadman Mesa and Hardscrabble Canyon to stop forward progression of the fire toward Strawberry and Pine. Crews worked on strengthening the community defenses by constructing fire lines and completing structural protection work around the town and residences.
Patience is requested during evacuations as the Backbone Fire remains a threat. Moderate rains were experienced around the fire area providing opportunities for the firefighters to limit the rate of spread. The Backbone Fire is 1 percent contained and continues to be one of many wildfires burning in hot, dry conditions across Arizona.
The Yavapai County Sherriff’s Office has issued a Ready status notification for the communities of Beasley Flats and Verde Lakes. Residents should be considering what they need to do if an evacuation were to be ordered. The fire continued to advance slowly to the northwest. Residents of Camp Verde and nearby communities will continue to see the fire follow this pattern of growth for the next several days while firefighters establish containment lines to stop this growth.
Last night, fire personnel began a firing operation starting at the intersection of state routes 260 and 87 near the communities of Strawberry and Pine. Crews plan to spend today holding and improving this line. Firefighters and equipment continued to construct and improve the community protection line around Strawberry. Structure protection crews worked to protect values at risk and assess hazards in the communities of Strawberry and Pine. Crews were inserted into Hardscrabble Canyon to construct direct line on the fire.