Brins Fire Update

Fire Name: Brins Fire

Time/Date Started: Sunday, June 18

Location: Red Rock Ranger District, Coconino National Forest; The Brins Fire is burning within the Red Rock Secret Mountain Wilderness. The fire is about 1 mile north of Sedona.

Cause: The Brins Fire was human-caused. The apparent cause is an escaped campfire from a suspected transient camp in the area. The investigation is ongoing. If anyone has any information concerning the start of the fire, please call U.S. Forest Service Law Enforcement at 928-527-3508.

Fuels: Brush, grass, ponderosa pine

Size: 1,500 acres

% Contained: 5 %

Resources Committed: 8 Type 1 crews (hotshot crews), 3 Type 2 crews, 31 engines, 4 water tenders. Total helicopters on fire today = 7. Airtankers will be available out of Prescott today as needed. Total personnel = 457

Estimated Cost to Date: $700,000

Predicted Weather: Hot and dry conditions will continue. Temperatures are expected to be in the upper-90s with relative humidity levels in the single digits. Winds near the fire area are expected to be from the southwest at 15 to 25 mph with gusts to 35 mph due to local effects created by the fire and surrounding terrain.

Structures: No structures have been lost.

Evacuations: The evacuation order for the following communities continues:

• Oak Creek Canyon from Midgely Bridge to the fish hatchery in Sterling Canyon (this includes homes, businesses and Forest Service campgrounds)

• North end of Soldiers Pass Road (everything north of Casa Contenta)

• Upper part of Jordan Road (everything north of Navahopi)

The evacuations will be re-evaluated following today’s operational period.

Evacuation Center Locations:

Big Park Community School

25 W. Saddle Horn Road

Village of Oak Creek

Sedona, Ariz.

*This location is for people evacuating south of Slide Rock.

NAU Field House

Northern Arizona University

Flagstaff, Ariz.

Corner of Knoles Drive and McCreary, next to the University Union

*This location is for people evacuating north of Slide Rock.

Closures: U.S. Highway 89A is closed through Oak Creek Canyon. The closure will be re-evaluated following today’s operational period.

Trail/Road Closures Related to Brins Fire:

• Forest Road 152 off of Dry Creek Road (access road into Vultee Arch) is closed. (The county road known as Dry Creek Road is open.)

• All trails off of Forest Road 152 are closed. Those trails are: Brins Mesa, Devil's Bridge, Secret Canyon. Also, the road to VanDeren Cabin is closed.

• The North Urban Trails System is closed. That system includes Jordan Trailhead, Soldier Pass Trailhead, Sugarloaf Trailhead, Thunder Mountain Trailhead and all trails connecting from those trailheads.

• Kelly Canyon Road west of I-17

• The south end of Woody Mountain Road (Forest Road 231) where it intersects with Forest Road 535

• Forest Road 237 at Kachina Village

(NOTE: Some of these road closures are related to smoke impacts.)

Summary: The Brins Fire burned very actively on top of Wilson Mountain yesterday. From Wilson Mountain, it backed slowly down drainages in some areas. It moved into Oak Creek Canyon. However, it is not moving laterally up or down the canyon. Today, firefighters will continue focusing on structure protection in the evacuated areas and building containment lines. Specifically, they will be working to flank the fire and halt its progression on its east and west sides. The structure protection efforts include reducing fuels along U.S. Highway 89A through Oak Creek Canyon, enhancing ingress/egress routes in Oak Creek Canyon, cleaning up fuels on and around homes, and setting up sprinkler systems near structures. Aircraft will continue working to limit growth at the fire’s head, which is on the north/northeast side. Despite incredibly steep, rugged terrain, no injuries have occurred on the fire.

The Brins Fire is burning within the Red Rock Secret Mountain Wilderness. A Wilderness is designated by Congress as an area protected and managed to preserve its natural conditions. In Wilderness areas, firefighters use MIST – Minimum Impact Suppression Techniques. Basically, firefighters fight fire aggressively while also seeking to minimize impacts to the natural landscape. Firefighters will not only work to contain the Brins Fire, but they will also work to rehabilitate areas where the firefighting effort has impacted the landscape.

A Type 1 Incident Management Team from the Great Basin area will assume management of the fire at 6 p.m. today.

Sedona businesses remain open. Visitors to the area should access Sedona via state Route 179 through the Village of Oak Creek or from Cottonwood via U.S. Highway 89A.

Cooperating Agencies: City of Sedona, Office of State Forestry, Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office, Coconino County Sheriff’s Office, Department of Public Safety, Sedona Fire District, Sedona Police Department, Grand Canyon Chapter of the American Red Cross

Forest Closures:

As fire danger increases across the Southwest the Coconino National Forest will close to public access and use Friday morning, June 23, at 8 a.m.

Effective Friday, the Coconino National Forest will close to public access. Conditions have warranted closure of the entire national forest. Closures in the past have proven to be an effective means of reducing the number of human-caused fires.

Included in the Coconino closures:

• All campgrounds, day use picnic areas and cabins on the forest.

• All trails on the Coconino National Forest.

• All lakes, including Lake Mary, Ashurst Lake, Kinnikinick Lake, Blue Ridge Reservoir, Stoneman Lake.

• Cinder Hills Off-Highway Vehicle Area north of Flagstaff.

• St. Joseph’s Youth Camp near Mormon Lake.

• Arizona Snowbowl Skyride.

• All National Forest System Roads will be closed, but all interstates, state and county roads through the Coconino National Forest will remain open.

Sedona and Flagstaff still offer many summer attractions and activities. Private campgrounds and the campground at Fort Tuthill County Park near Flagstaff will remain open with campfire and smoking restrictions. All Forest Service offices and visitor centers will be open. The closure will be lifted when sufficient precipitation is received to adequately reduce the risk of wildfire to a manageable level, and hot, dry weather conditions are not forecast to continue.

For further information about closures and restrictions in the Coconino National Forest, call

928-226-4601 or toll-free 1-877-864-6985 between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m. Information is posted on the internet at www.coconinoforest.us.

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