Tinder Fire update: Fire managers prepare for more windy days

Release Date: May 9, 2018  

Contact(s): MEDIA Contact: 928-224-8306, Mogollon Rim Ranger Station: 928-477-2255

HAPPY JACK, Ariz., May 9, 2018, For Immediate Release – Coconino National Forest and Arizona State Forestry personnel are working together to suppress and secure the northeast section of the Tinder Fire before strong winds arrive over the next two days.

Since East Clear Creek is made up of steep and rocky terrain that ranges from 30 to 60 percent slopes, the only safe and successful firefighting efforts are from the air. Firefighters are using three helicopters to dip water from C.C. Cragin Reservoir to douse the northeast section of the fire, aided by ground support. In order for public and firefighter safety, the reservoir is currently closed and personnel have closed the gate on Forest Road 751 at Rock Crossing Campground that leads to the reservoir.

Southwest winds are predicted to move smoke to the northeast toward Winslow and will impact Blue Ridge Communities during evening hours. Tomorrow’s weather will bring strong afternoon winds that will increase fire activity and thicker smoke.

The public will likely see residual smoke from this fire for several weeks, as tree stumps and other forest fuels will continue to smolder until a significant amount of rainfall extinguishes them completely.

Coconino County has issued a “Set” stage for the southeastern-most division of Mogollon Ranchettes, and local residents are reminded to remain prepared for any “Ready, Set & Go” event which could be implemented by Coconino County in the case of an emergency evacuation.


Tinder Fire Summary

  • Date/Time Reported: April 27, 2018 at 11:43 a.m. by Moqui Tower lookout.
  • Origin Location: Origin and Cause Investigators determined that the fire originated in the East Clear Creek drainage approximately 1 mile downstream from Forest Road 95. Forest Road 95 runs north-south and is located approximately 1.5 miles east of C.C. Cragin Reservoir: 34°33'26.8"N 111°09'41.4"W
  • Current Size: 16,309 acres.
  • Topography & Fuels: Steep rocky canyons and cliffs with 30-60 percent slopes, burning in grass and understory.
  • Cause: Abandoned Illegal Campfire.
  • Containment: 79%.
  • Current Resources: 125 personnel including three crews, three helicopters, six engines, two dozers and other support personnel.
  • Resources En Route: None; Additional resources will be ordered if necessary.
  • Structures Lost: 33 primary residences, 54 minor structures.
  • Structures Threatened: None.
  • Evacuations: None. However, the southeastern section of Mogollon Ranchettes is under a “Set” stage, as implemented by Coconino County Emergency Services. For more information on “Ready, Set, Go” please visit http://www.coconino.az.gov/1908/Ready---Set---Go
  • Injuries: None.
  • Closures & Restrictions:
    • Area Closure: A large area around the wildfire is currently under a Closure Order, which prohibits anyone from entering the area other than authorized personnel such as first responders and firefighting personnel. For details regarding this Closure Order, please see for the Coconino National Forest Orders website at https://bit.ly/2KKx380.
    • FAA TFR: A Federal Aviation Administration temporary flight restriction remains in place over the fire area which prohibits Drones and unmanned aircraft systems from entering the area.
    • Stage 2 Fire Restrictions: Stage II Fire Restrictions are in effect across the entire Coconino National Forest, which prohibit a list of activities. Details of these prohibitions can be found online at https://bit.ly/2rqSQJF.
    • C.C. Cragin Reservoir: The reservoir is currently closed for public safety, as firefighters are using the reservoir as a dip site for three helicopters. For more information, please contact the Mogollon Rim Ranger Station at (928) 477-2255.
  • Smoke Impacts: Internal smoldering will continue to produce residual smoke. South/southwest winds will produce smoke impacts to Winslow and Blue Ridge communities during the day. In the evening hours smoke will likely impact Blue Ridge communities, drain into canyon areas, and possibly impacting areas such as Strawberry, Payson and the Verde Valley.
  • Investigation Contacts: If anyone was in the area of Forest Road 95 or East Clear Creek near the origin of the Tinder Fire on April 26 or 27 and has information that could help this investigation, please contact Coconino National Forest Law Enforcement at (928) 527-3511.
  • Tinder Fire Information Resources: