News Alert: Galahad Fire Likely to Burn Until Wetting Rains Arrive

From our friends at the National Park Service:

Grand Canyon, Ariz. – The Galahad Fire has been contained to the point where no direct threats remain to park resources. The fire will continue to burn across the southern portion of the Walla Valley Peninsula west of the W-4 Road until wetting rains arrive, typically in mid-July. Currently it is estimated to be 4,363 acres and 50% contained. The increase in containment reflects ongoing holding actions by firefighters along the W-4 Road.

Firefighters conducted successful burnouts prior to the arrival of northwest winds on Sunday safeguarding the W- 4 Road containment line. As the fire moves gradually down the peninsula the observed fire behavior is smoldering and creeping with flame lengths of six inches to a foot. Fire managers remain confident that the fire will stay west of the W-4 Road and provide ecological resource benefits by returning fire to the peninsula’s ponderosa pine ecosystem.

In anticipation of changing wind conditions fire managers are maintaining current staffing levels. As fire behavior and weather conditions allow, some firefighters, engines and aircraft will be released over the next days and made available to other fires if needed. The remaining firefighters and engines will patrol and monitor the fire’s progress daily until it is declared out.

Smoke from the fire will continue to be present in the area until the arrival of significant moisture. Smoke may be visible for days or even weeks depending on fuel and weather conditions. Smoke should have little impact on park visitors or surrounding communities.

The containment figure of 50% is based on the portion of the fire that firefighters have been actively controlling along the W-4 Road for resource protection. The remaining 50% of the fire is being managed for natural resource objectives and will be contained by the canyon rim and previously burned areas where there is less fuel left to burn.

Two road closures remain in effect for public and firefighter safety; the W-4 Road is closed from the junction of the FS268B road south to Point Sublime and the W-1 Road, also known as the Point Sublime Road, is closed from the W-4 junction, east to the western end of the basin.

Information on Galahad Fire, including maps and pictures, can be found on Inciweb at http://inciweb.nwcg.gov.

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