Ground crews being flown to Gardner Fire near Pine Valley; fire still at 0% containment

ST. GEORGE — The Gardner Fire, burning within 1-2 miles of Pine Valley in the Dixie National Forest, is now mapped to have burned 41 acres with 0% containment.

The Gardner fire burning near Pine Valley is in a remote location and threatening structures, Dixie National Forest, Utah, Aug. 19, 2020 | Photo courtesy of Ron Broad, St. George News

Due to the remote area of the fire, aerial resources are being used while ground crews are being flown in by helicopter to assist in suppression efforts.

“It is extremely difficult to get crews in and out of the fire,” Gardner Fire managers told St. George News in an email. “They are being flown in by helicopter. Safety issues are steep and rocky terrain, heavy fuel loading, snags and extreme fire danger.”

There are currently no evacuations, but if necessary law enforcement will notify those impacted.

The fire was human-caused, according to the managers, and they want to remind the public of the fire restrictions in place throughout Dixie National Forest. The exact cause is still under investigation.

There are structures threatened at the Pine Valley Campground and some portions of Grass Valley and Pine Valley. As far as the weather near the fire, fire managers said conditions are unseasonably hot and dry.

“The Dixie National Forest is setting records with fire danger levels and drought conditions,” fire managers said. “These conditions are leading to extreme fire behavior and fire suppression difficulties. Nationally, we are at a preparedness level of 5, so firefighting resources are limited nation-wide.”

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

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