Over the next few days, firefighters on the Sawtooth Fire will begin back burning operations as part of structure protection and community safety measures in and around the northeast portion of Queen Valley.
To ensure safety, starting at noon today, residents along Silver King Road and Williams Road in Queen Valley will be placed in precautionary GO status as they are being asked to vacate their homes while these suppression operations take place.
The Tonto National Forest will begin Stage 2 Fire Restrictions May 12 at 8 a.m. in conjunction with other federal and state land management agencies in Arizona.
According to Tonto National Forest Supervisor Neil Bosworth, rising temperatures and an increase in drying trends of grass fuel loads resulting from above average winter moisture prompted the decision to implement these fire restrictions.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service, Southwestern Region is enacting a recreational shooting restriction for the Coronado, Prescott and Tonto National Forests to reduce wildfires and to protect the health and safety of employees and communities.
Fire specialists plan to burn 58 acres of vegetative piles Feb. 13-14 in the Washington Park area north of Payson.
Residents and visitors to the area can expect to see and smell light-to-moderate amounts of smoke during the two-day prescribed fire. Smoke will impact the Washington Park area during the day. In the evening, smoke will impact the Rim Trail, Verde Glen, Shadow Rim Girl Scout Ranch, Washington Park sub-division, and Beaver Valley communities.
Tonto fire specialists plan to burn approximately 75 acres of piles Feb. 3-6 on the Cave Creek Ranger District near the Vista Verde subdivision from 164th Street and the Forest Service boundary to west/southwest of 176th Street following the Forest Service boundary to Rio Verde Drive.
Residents and visitors to the area can expect to see and smell moderate amounts of smoke during the four-day operation. In addition to the burn area, smoke will impact Rio Verde Foothills and Vista Verde during the day.
Snow and wet weather are predicted to arrive in Arizona this week, which may leave many forest roads impassable and requiring a temporary road closure on the Tonto National Forest. Depending on rain and snow fall amounts, Mount Peeley (Forest Road 201), Mount Ord (Forest Road 626), and Four Peaks (Forest Road 143) may be temporarily closed. The last rainstorm also caused washouts and rocks to fall on the Horseshoe Dam Road (Forest Road 205). A four wheel drive vehicle is highly recommended to reach Horseshoe Lake.
Campfire, smoking and target shooting restrictions on the Tonto National Forest have been lifted, effective at 8:00 a.m. on Wednesday, September 24, 2019. The fire restrictions, which covered the entire forest, are no longer needed because fire danger has been reduced by recent rain and increased humidity levels. Campfires and smoking are now allowed throughout the forest. Target shooting is also once again allowed in dispersed areas where it can be conducted safely, but remains prohibited in areas close to homes and developed recreations areas of the Tonto National Forest.
Forest officials are temporarily closing some roads and recreation facilities on the Tonto National Forest due to heavy rain and flowing washes. Please avoid low-lying water crossings, and watch for debris on roads. Obey all warnings issued by Forest, County, and State officials. Roads and gates on the Tonto National Forest will remain closed until water recedes, and conditions can be assessed. The purpose of these closures is for public and employee safety, as well as reducing resource damage.