UPDATED: Mangum Fire near Kaibab Plateau in Arizona grows to more than 500 acres

Smoke can be seen for miles as the "Mangum Fire" continues burning in Kaibab National Forest, reaching more than 500 acres, Coconino County, Ariz., June 9, 2020 | Photo courtesy of the U.S. Forest Service, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — The Mangum Fire burning on the north ranger district of Kaibab National Forest has grown to more than 500 acres as fire crews tackle the blaze driven by high winds across rugged, inaccessible terrain.

Update June 10, 6 p.m. Firefighters were able to gain ground on the now 800-acre fire Tuesday due to less windy conditions and additional firefighting resources. They were able to successfully began establishing potential boundaries to the wildfire’s future growth along the eastern, northern and western perimeters. A Type 2 Incident Management Team will assume command of the Mangum Fire at 6 p.m. Wednesday.

The fire was discovered Monday afternoon, and by 3 p.m., crews were dispatched to the area near Mangum Camp east of Forest Road 22 over a mile north of Big Springs.

The blaze then spread southeast toward an area near Big Springs, according to a statement released by the U.S. Forest Service Tuesday.

Additional resources are expected to arrive  Tuesday to assist in the wildfire suppression effort, and a forecast that includes lighter winds will aid firefighters and slow the spread of the blaze.

Map with a pin depicting the location of the 500-acre “Mangum Fire” burning in the Kaibab National Forest, Coconino County, Arizona, June 9, 2020 | Image courtesy of Incident Information System, St. George News

Firefighting resources that were dispatched to the area include two heavy air tankers, three helicopters, several engines, four hotshot crews, a water tender and various management personnel.

Additionally, a Type 2 Incident Management Team has been ordered to coordinate the wildfire suppression effort, which is used whenever there is a large number of resources needed, including establishing a base camp, and the incident requires significant support.

Suppression efforts Tuesday include using retardant along the eastern and northern flanks of the blaze to create a fire line, according to fire authorities, which limits its spread in both directions as helicopters continue making bucket drops to cool the wildfire’s hottest areas to reduce the fire’s intensity.

The wildfire is burning in an area southwest of Jacob Lake and a little more than 15 miles north of the boundary of the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. Smoke is visible from both the north and south rim of Grand Canyon National Park, as well as Fredonia and surrounding communities.

A temporary flight restriction is in place over the fire area and no other closures or evacuations are in place at this time. However, temporary closures and detours on Forest Road 22 and other roads in the immediate fire area are possible to allow for active firefighting operations. Updates will be provided as additional information becomes available.

For updates and information on the Mangum Fire, click here.

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

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