Arizona Wildfires Update, July 9, 2021

Photo: Middle Fire, July 9, 2021

Tiger Fire

Current as of 7/9/2021, 12:13:19 PM
Cause: Lightning
Date of Origin: Wednesday June 30th, 2021 approx. 02:00 PM
Location: 11 miles East of Crown King
Incident Commander: Dave Gesser
Total Personnel: 367
Size: 15,648 Acres
Percent of Perimeter Contained: 29%
Estimated Containment Date: Tuesday July 20th, 2021 approx. 12:00 AM

Thursday, the fire perimeter between Black Canyon City north to Castle Creek and west of Bumble Bee was contained.  Due to increased humidity, the fires overall intensity slowed but remained active. Firefighters remained abreast of the fire’s westward progress in the Horsethief Basin area by using firing operations from prepared lines to direct fire movement away from structures and improvements.

Other crews worked to prepare the Crown King Road (County Road 59) for possible contingency firing operations between Cleator and Crown King, should future conditions require that tactic. Preparations for potential firing operations were also made along portions of Black Canyon Road (FS 101) as the fire moved downhill north and east toward more defensible terrain. A late afternoon rain cell dropped moisture over the northern portion of the fire.

With the community of Crown King in a “Set” status, the town is now closed to the public. Only residents will be allowed in and out.

24 hours: The potential of thunderstorms with strong outflows from an easterly direction returns in the fire area. This could aid in the active fire behavior as there is slow change in the current weather pattern to lower temps, slightly higher RH% and with wind directions becoming steady from a southwesterly.

Fire is expected to increase in activity. Fire is spreading to the North and West towards the Horsethief Basin area, Crown King and Cleator. Prep will continue in these areas for additional burnout operation to protect values at risk. Operations in Division F will include continued firing in the Horsethief Basin around Forest Service Lookout and campground. Division K and M will continue to implement construction of line in the community of Crown King and prep along the Crown King Road to the east and continue implementing structure protection measures. Operations will focus on securing and improving the fireline in In DIVS P/W will implement prep work along the 100 road SE of Cleator and be prepared for firing operations.

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Middle Fire

Current as of 7/9/2021, 8:19:15 PM
Cause: Lightning
Date of Origin: Tuesday June 29th, 2021 approx. 03:00 PM
Location: 3 miles west of the Verde River, 3 miles NE of Red Creek Ranch
Incident Commander: Carl Schwope, SW IMT 4
Total Personnel: 103
Size: 2,399 Acres

he fire is burning 3 miles west of the Verde River and 3 miles northeast of Red Creek Ranch, in a remote area where access is extremely challenging due to steep, rocky terrain. Fire activity has steadily increased due to outflow winds from recent thunderstorms, higher temperatures, and lower humidity. The fire continues to grow to the north and northeast.

Southwest Area Type 2 Incident Management Team 4 assumed command of the Middle Fire at 6:00 AM on Friday, July 9, 2021.

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Bottom Fire

Size: 6,004 acres
Containment: 87%
Cause: Lightning
Location: 7 miles west of Bylas, AZ
Start Date: June 28, 2021
Incident Personnel: 144

Highlights: The Central West Zone Type 3 Team will transfer command of the Bottom Fire back to the local unit, with Christine Thompson as Incident Commander at 7:00 AM on Saturday, July 10, 2021. This is the final updatefrom this team. We would like to thank the local communities for all their support and hospitality.

Operations: Fire crews will continue with suppression efforts securing US 70. Today is expected to be quiet.There should be minimal smoke on the highway today. Containment is holding. Crews will begin monitoring andcontinue accessing all values at risk.

Weather: The weather pattern remains fairly similar to the last few days, with daily chances for afternoon and evening thunderstorms. Storms will continue to form over the higher terrain to the northeast and propagate toward the southwest, with outflows potentially impacting the fire area. Otherwise, winds will favor a westerly direction during the afternoon with gusts up to around 20 mph. Mostly sunny, chance of thunderstorms and showers, maximum temperature around 110 degrees, minimum humidity 15-18 percent, southeast winds 7-11 mph with gusts to 20 mph.

Safety and Restrictions: To ensure the health and safety of the public, firefighters, and other fire personnel, the public is encouraged to stay clear of the fire area and drive with caution, firefighters will be working around roadways. Unauthorized use of drones in a wildfire area endangers the lives of pilots and firefighters. See www.nifc.gov/drones for additional information regarding the dangers drones pose to wildland fire fighting aircraft and personnel on the ground. “If you fly, we can’t!

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