Little Sand Fire Update July 4, 2012
The Little Sand Fire did not move on Tuesday due to higher humidity and the afternoon arrival of clouds and thunderstorms which reduced fire behavior. Fire managers surveyed fire lines for potential rehabilitation needs and planned implementation strategies. Although several thunderstorms passed near the fire area very little precipitation was received over the southwest corner of the fire where burning has been most active. The north end of the fire received about one tenth of an inch of rain during the evening hours. Fire personnel assisted in the suppression of one new lightning fire.
As the week progresses more moisture is expected over the fire area. Incident Meteorologist Jason Clapp stated that “the weather over the fire area will be more moist with a greater chance of rain towards the weekend”. Under current fire conditions very little fire growth is expected. Personnel placed three rain gauges in various locations on the fire to determine the amount of rain actually falling. Gauges will be monitored on a daily basis to determine rainfall amounts. A containment date for the fire is estimated for July 27th if weather conditions develop as expected.
On Wednesday, fire crews will continue structure protection in the Weminuche Valley and support local San Juan National Forest resources in the initial attack of new fires. Analysis and implementation of suppression repair methods will continue. Suppression repair is actions taken to correct land disturbing activities which were created as the result of fire suppression. An example of this work would be the removal of berms created by dozer operations associated with the fire. Demobilization of fire resources will continue to match work needs with available personnel. Some resources are being reassigned to other large fires such as the Squirrel Creek Fire in Wyoming.
With the increase in activity on the south end of the fire, two roads will be added to the list of closed routes. These include First Fork Road (FR 622) and West Monument Road (FR 630) which will both be closed at the Sheep Creek Trailhead. In the Vallecito area, the Pine Piedra Stock Driveway is closed at the end of Beaver Meadow, and the East Creek Trail (FT 535) is closed at the East Creek Trailhead on Forest Road 852. All other trails in the Vallecito area are open. Additional information on closures on the San Juan National Forest may be found on the Forest web site at http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/sanjuan/alerts-notices.
Fire Statistics at a Glance:
Start Date: May 13th, 2012 Cause: Lightning Acreage: 24,800
Containment: 40% Personnel: 156 Hand Crews: 3
Structures Destroyed: 0 Aviation: 4 helicopters Engines: 9
Dozers: 1 Injuries: 3 Cost to Date: $6.903 Million
Cooperating Agencies: Hinsdale County, Archuleta County, USFS, CSFS
|Date of Origin||Sunday May 13th, 2012 approx. 04:00 PM|
|Location||13 miles NW of Pagosa Springs|
|Incident Commander||C. Heaton|
|Estimated Containment Date||Friday July 27th, 2012 approx. 12:00 AM|
|Fuels Involved||10 Timber (litter and understory)Timber, litter, and understory. Dry mixed conifer and hardwoods. Fuel models 9 and 10|
|Fire Behavior||Smoldering with some backing down slope in Div. Y|
|Significant Events||IMT personel assisted with local initial attack of fires and detection flights.|
|Planned Actions||Continued structure protection in Weminuche Valley, patrol and monitor for spot fires south of the Piedra Reiver. Support local IA as requested. Demob and suppression repair will continue.|
|Remarks||Transfer of command from NIMO IC W. Bennett to NIMO IC Heaton occured today ar 0600|
|Wind Conditions||9-12, g 25 mph N|