Increased Moisture Allows Crews To Begin Repairs

Acres: 3,453 acres Start Date: August 17, 2020
Cause: Lightning

Containment: 55%

Total personnel: 284

Location: Rio en Medio Trail, Española Ranger District, Santa Fe National Forest

Fuels: Dry mixed conifer, ponderosa pine

 Highlights: Intermittent rain over the past few days continues to delay planned burnout operations to secure the western side of the fire area. Until fuels have dried out, crews are shifting their efforts to suppression repair.

 Operations: The recent rain has both helped and hindered operations on the Medio Fire. Fire intensity has been reduced across the fire and has given crews an opportunity to begin suppression repair efforts. At the same time, the increased moisture has further delayed burnout operations until fuels have dried enough to carry fire to the completed handlines along the western flank. Yesterday, crews hiked three hours into the fire area to complete handline around the spot fire that was discovered across the Rio Nambe Trail. Crews will continue to monitor this spot fire and assess future needs along the northern edge. Crews are working to chip and clear vegetation along Forest Road 102 and near homes in lower Pacheco Canyon. The threat to these homes continues to diminish with each passing day, although structural protection equipment remains in place as a safety precaution. Due to successful firefighting efforts, the incident management team (IMT) has started to demobilize resources to make them available to support other active incidents across the region.

 Community Meeting: The IMT hosted a virtual community meeting yesterday, with over 150 participants viewing the live video. A recording of the meeting is now available at No account is required to view the video. The next virtual community meeting will be held tonight at 6 pm on the Santa Fe National Forest’s Facebook page. American Sign Language interpretation and live-captioning services are provided. We will monitor online Facebook questions during the meeting, or you can email us your questions in advance at A recording will be posted immediately following the live meeting.

 Weather:  Partly cloudy with cooler temperatures. Isolated showers and thunderstorms are possible in the afternoon.

 Closures and Restrictions: Santa Fe County has implemented a burn banStage 1 fire restrictions are in effect on the Santa Fe National Forest to reduce the risk for human-caused wildfire under the current weather conditions. A closure order remains in effect prohibiting members of the public from entering the restricted area, including all Forest Service lands, roads and trails, within an area that is roughly defined by the Rio Nambe Trail #160 on the north, the Borrego Trail #150 and Forest Road 412 on the east, Forest Road 102 on the south and back up the forest boundary line on the west to meet the Rio Nambe Trail #160. Fire managers are asking the public to exercise caution and avoid all areas that could be impacted by the Medio Fire. A Temporary Flight Restriction is in place over the fire area.

 Smoke: Updated smoke and air quality information is available at Smoke will gradually increase throughout the week as fuels dry out and firing operations resume. Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory problems or heart disease are encouraged to take precautionary measures. Information on air quality and protecting your health can be found at