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Rattlesnake Fire burning in Castle Creek Wilderness

8/19/2015

BUMBLE BEE – A wildfire is burning in the Castle Creek Wilderness, near Bumble Bee. Sparked by lightning, the Rattlesnake Fire was first reported by Mt. Union Lookout on Aug. 16. 

According to a report from the Prescott National Forest News Service, the fire was estimated at approximately 75 acres when it was first reported. It has since grown to 1,300 acres, as of the evening of Aug. 17. Smoke is visible along the I-17 in the Sunset Point area.

The Prescott National Forest News Service reports that the Rattlesnake Fire is not burning near any buildings.

“There are no structures, private property, or critical infrastructure threatened by the Rattlesnake Fire,” an Aug. 17 release notes.

Since no structures are threatened, the Forest Service will monitor and manage the fire. The Rattlesnake Fire is burning in an area of steep terrain and is difficult for firefighters to access.

“Fire managers are continuing to monitor the Rattlesnake Fire for now based on firefighter safety and accessibility issues related to the steep terrain,” the Forest Service noted in its Aug. 17 release. “The Forest Service’s fire management objectives in designated wilderness areas are to permit lightning-caused fires to play a natural ecological role on the landscape and to reduce the risks and consequences of wildfire escaping from wilderness.”

The Prescott National Forest News Service noted that when fighting wildfires, fire managers consider multiple factors, such as firefighter and public safety, location, fuels, terrain, current and forecast weather, potential fire spread, and smoke impacts.

Stay updated on this and other fires in the area by visiting the Prescott National Forest Web Site at www.fs.fed.us/r3/Prescott or calling the Prescott National Forest Fire Information Hotline at (928) 777-5799.