Monument fire in Arizona continues burning into the Huachuca Mountains

Monument fire 6-16-2011

Update: on June 21 we posted more information about the Monument fire, including a current map.


Monument fire 6-16-2011
Monument fire 6-16-2011. Photo by Jamar Younger

The Monument fire, straddling the Arizona/Mexico border, continued to spread into the high country Wednesday night but the progression across the flatlands virtually stopped late on Wednesday. Overnight the fire was still active on the southwest and west sides near Montezuma Canyon and Coronado Peak.

The Arizona Emergency Network at 9:30 p.m. on June 15 listed the fire at 17% contained and 9,300 acres. We are guessing that it may have grown by at least a couple of thousand acres since their last report. Here is an excerpt from their site:

(Posted June 15, 2011 at 9:30 p.m.) The Monument Fire is burning on the Palominos Fire District in the Huachuca Mountains of the Coronado National Memorial and Coronado National Forest. It is 9,300 acres and 17 percent contained.

Today’s Recap: On June 15, crews made significant progress with handline construction and burnout operations in the vicinity of Coronado National Memorial. Crews secured and mopped-up the portion of the fire that crossed Hwy 92during the day operational period on 6/14. Crews continued and initiated point protection operations around the structures in Stump and Hunter Canyons and constructed dozer line reinforced with fixed wing retardant to minimize fire spread across Hwy 92. Cochise County Sheriff Department damage assessment teams are assessing damage to homes, outbuildings, and infrastructure in Ash Canyon. Hwy 92 remains closed for a distance of 6 miles, from the junction of Hereford Road and Hwy 92 to the junction of Hyw 92 and Coronado Rd. Pre-evacuation notices have been ordered for all residents from Stump Canyon to Miller Canyon. The fire is established in the heads of Hunter and Miller Canyons.

Yesterday’s Activity: The Ash Canyon area experienced extreme fire behavior due to dry, windy weather conditions, with the fire moving down the canyon along both sides of the road. Residences were evacuated from Ash Canyon, and Highway 92 was closed between Hereford Road and Valley View School. The fire crossed Highway 92 at the mouth of Ash Canyon, forcing evacuations of residents north of Valley View School to Palominas Road. Helicopters and air tankers dropped water and retardant to help slow the fire.

The weather on Thursday will not be favorable for firefighters. As you can see in the map below Red Flag Warnings are posted for much of the Southwest for today.

Red Flag warnings 6-16-2011
Red Flag warnings 6-16-2011

Below are two maps of the Monument fire, with fire perimeters current as of 10:40 p.m. MT, June 15, 2011.


Map of Monument fire, 2240 6-15-2011
Map of Monument fire, 10:40 MT, 6-15-2011. MODIS/Google Earth
Map of Monument fire, 3-D, data 2240 6-15-2011
3-D map of Monument fire, 10:40 p.m. MT, 6-15-2011. MODIS/Google Earth


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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.