Firefighters have small Mora County blaze 30% contained

·2 min read

May 9—In less than a day, wildland firefighting teams were able to begin corralling a small blaze that ignited Monday on private land in Mora County.

Crews from the New Mexico State Forestry Division and the state's Wildfire Response Program, the U.S. Forest Service's Santa Fe Hotshots and volunteers from several local fire stations had contained 30% of the Las Cocas Fire's perimeter Tuesday, according to, a multi-agency fire information website.

The fire was reported just before 6 p.m. Monday south of Guadalupita near N.M. 434. It was estimated at 58 acres Tuesday afternoon, a little less than the 75 to 100 acres initially estimated by fire officials.

"There's no structures threatened at this time, and crews are working as quickly and as safely as they can to address the fire on the east flank and on the south flank," state wildfire prevention and communications coordinator George Ducker said.

A helicopter crew was aiding hand crews in the suppression effort, fire officials reported, adding the fire was active in interior areas and smoldering at the perimeter amid winds of 5-10 mph, raising concerns about the possibility of spot fires jumping dozer lines.

Ducker said the cause of the wildfire was under investigation, and he was unsure whether it was affecting burn scars in the area from last year's massive blazes.

Crews working to restrict the fire's movement hoped to contain most of the blaze Tuesday in preparation for a "wind pickup event" in the forecast for Wednesday.

The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning for critical fire conditions Wednesday, expecting a combination of warm temperatures, low humidity and heavier gusts.

"The wind is predicted, and as we all know, weather can change at a moment's notice," Ducker said. "So we're just hoping that we're gonna get as much work done today as we can."