Fire crews begin prep-work for anticipated Key Hole, Springs fire growth

Stock image, St. George News

WILLIAMS, Ariz. — The Springs Fire on the Williams Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest in Arizona picked up in activity Saturday due to drier conditions and higher winds.

The Springs Fire has grown to about 80 acres in size. The fire is located just east of Davenport Knoll, about 2 miles south of Summit Mountain east of County Road 73.

The Key Hole Fire, which is located just north of the Key Hole Sink near Duck Lake remains at 17 acres in size, smoldering and creeping slowly through pine needles and other forest debris. Firefighters will continue to monitor the activity of the Key Hole Fire, but growth is not likely because of the location and level of activity.

On Saturday, smoke was visible due to the Springs Fire at County Road 73 and Interstate 40 in the Parks area west to Williams. In order to reinforce boundaries established for the fire, fire managers used management ignitions along perimeter roads.

To help define a northeastern perimeter for the growth of the Springs Fire, fire crews used drip torches to burn fuel along the forest roads 57 and 354. Smoke may still be present, so motorists are asked to use caution when traveling in those areas.

Firefighters began work Sunday in preparation for the Springs Fire’s anticipated growth. The work included lining range fences, aspen enclosures and other potentially fire sensitive resources in the area. The prep-work ensures that the fire will spread naturally and the firefighters will be able to allow it to grow and treat acres without the risk of negatively impacting the values in the area.

No closures are in effect at this time related to the Springs Fire or the Key Hole Fire. Smoke will still be visible, but Kaibab National Forest managers want to assure members of the public who may see this smoke that the fires are being monitored by fire crews and that they are being considered for possible management to achieve resource objectives such as fuels reduction, wildlife habitat improvement and community protection.

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