Fire crews immediately responded to the Three River Fire, which started this morning, Monday, April 26, 2020. The fire has grown to 4000 acres and is being driven by steep terrain and extreme fire weather conditions, including gusty winds and low humidity levels around 8 percent. The fire started approximately ½ a mile from the Three Rivers Campground on the backside of the White Mountains of the Smokey Bear Ranger District but has spread almost to Ski Apache and into the South Fork area. The fire is 0 percent contained. Firefighters, aircraft, and equipment are on scene. Additional firefighting resources, including three additional large air tankers and ground crews, have been ordered and will be arriving as soon as possible. A Type-1 Incident Management Team was ordered this afternoon, will be in-briefed tomorrow, and take command thereafter. There have been no reported injuries. No structures have burned.
Smoke: Smoke was highly visible from Highway 54 and is moving to the northeast into the adjacent communities of Alto, Capitan, and Ruidoso. Please visit the NM Department of Health’s smoke page for information on protecting your health during fires and on smoky days: https://nmtracking.org/fire.
Fire Size: 4000 acres
Cause: Unknown, Under Investigation
Resources: 9 Engines, 1 Type-1 Hotshot Crew, 1 Large Air Tanker, 2 Air Attack, 1 Helicopter. Multiple additional resources have been ordered and will be arriving as soon as possible.
Date/Time Detected: Morning of Monday, April 26, 2021
Location: The fire started ½ a mile north of Three Rivers Campground and has spread almost to Ski Apache and into the South Fork Bonito area.
Evacuations: Evacuation notices are in place for:
• Nogal Canyon Area
• Bonito Canyon Area
• Ranchman’s Camp
• Loma Grande
• Cora Dutton
• Ski Apache
• Nazarean Church Camp, 200 Bonito Park Rd. Alto, NM 88316
• Capitan Senior Center at 412 Tiger Drive Capitan, NM 88316
• Ruidoso Downs Senior Center at 393 Highway 70 West Rd. Ruidoso Downs, NM 88346.
(Evacuees with livestock can take their animals to Lincoln County Fairgrounds at 101 5th St. Capitan, NM.)
• Ski Run Road
• Bonito Canyon Road aka Rd 107
• Nogal Canyon Road aka 400
• Three Rivers Trailhead and Campground
Source: National Forest Service- Lincoln National Forest