Mt. Emma Fire update: continued burning, no major growth

The Mt. Emma Fire has grown to 4,201 acres in size, and is burning in the Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument on the Arizona Strip, Arizona | Photo courtesy BLM Arizona Strip, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Fire staff from the Bureau of Land Management Arizona Strip District are continuing firefighting efforts on the Mt. Emma Fire. The lightning-caused fire located 75 miles southeast of St. George is approximately 3,882 acres as of June 30 after more accurate mapping.

The Mountain Emma fire has grown to acres | Photo courtesy of Alan Syphus, Bureau of Land Management, Arizona Strip District office, St. George News | Click photo to enlarge
The Mountain Emma fire has grown to 3,882 acres | Photo courtesy of Alan Syphus, Bureau of Land Management, Arizona Strip District office, St. George News | Click photo to enlarge

“The fire did receive a little bit of moisture last night,” Chris Henrie, incident commander for the Mt. Emma Fire incident command post on Mt. Trumbull, said. “There’s been no major growth. The fire activity is still smoldering and creeping with isolated torching.”

The fire began June 24 at 4:40 p.m. on the Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument and burned into Grand Canyon National Park Thursday, June 25.

Due to increased traffic of fire staff and operation services traveling to and from the area, fire managers request the public’s help in ensuring safety on backcountry roadways in the vicinity of the fire.

“We’d like to ask for the public’s help in ensuring firefighter safety and request that all traffic near the area slow down and remain cautious and mindful of increased traffic on the roads en route to the Mt. Emma fire,” BLM Arizona Strip District Public Affairs Officer Rachel Carnahan said.

The fire is being managed by a Color Country Interagency Type 3 Incident Management Team. Resources on the fire Sunday include three Type 6 Engines, one Hot Shot crew and one Type 2 Initial Attack crew.

The fire is burning in open Ponderosa pine, pinyon and juniper.

Due to the rough, remote terrain the fire is burning in, fire managers will continue to use direct and indirect suppression tactics throughout the length of this fire in order to maintain safety for fire personnel. Direct and indirect tactics include fire personnel fighting fire on the edge of the fire or removed from the fire in an area that allows them to fall back to road or natural barriers for safety.

The Mt. Emma fire is burning in and out of the footprint of the 1999 Emma Fire, which burned 1,286 acres. It is also located northwest of the 2005 Tuweep fire, which burned 1,866 acres.

The 57-acre Sand Cove Fire located 30 miles southwest of St. George on the Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument was called contained, controlled and out.

There are no road or trail closures anticipated at this time. Smoke may be visible from St. George; Kanab; Fredonia, Arizona; and the North and South Rims of the Grand Canyon.

Lighting across the district last night ignited nine new fires. Fire crews contained all fires, the largest of which was the Moriah Knoll Fire, which was 3.5 acres in size.

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