Rainfall helps diminish most fires on Arizona Strip, one grows due to winds

Hobble Complex Fire preflight briefing, July 13, 2012. | Photo courtesy of Color County Interagency Fire Management

MOHAVE COUNTY, Ariz. – Fires on the Arizona Strip started by lightning continue. The Plateau Fire remains at 4,500, while the Hobble Complex Fire has increased to 35,000 acres due to high winds.

A series of thunderstorms that passed through the region resulted in 13 lightning caused fire starts on the Arizona Strip late Wednesday afternoon. Rainfall Thursday evening helped diminish fire activity on all fires on the Arizona Strip.

Friday’s estimated acreage for the Hobble Complex is approximately 35,000 acres and the estimate for the Plateau Fire is 4,500 acres. Due to yesterday’s thunderstorm activity and winds, the Hobble Complex grew from 18,000 acres to its current size.

The increased weather activity also caused the Hobble Complex to grow rapidly and produce significant smoke that came north into St. George. Smoke is expected in and around the St. George area for the next couple of days.

The Hobble Complex Fire and Plateau Fires are 35 and 65 miles south of St. George respectively. The Hobble Complex Fire is near the Grand Wash Cliffs on the Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument, while the Plateau is near Snap Point on Grand Canyon-Parashant lands.

Current fire statistics


Locations of the Hobble Complex and Plateau Fires | Graphic Courtesy of Color Country Interagency Fire Management

Hobble Complex Fire

Cause: Lightning

Fire Behavior: Moderated due to rain and higher humidity levels on Friday. Crews continue to work their way around crucial portions of the fire.

Closures: Roads surrounding each fire are closed for public safety purposes.

Structures: Three out buildings were destroyed near the point of origin; one trailer, one shed, and one outhouse.

Percent Contained: 25 percent

Fuels:  Cheatgrass and pinyon/juniper trees on both fires.

Fire Crews/Resources: Clint Coates’ Color Country Interagency Type III team is in command of the Hobble Complex. Four hand crews, nine engines, four water tenders, two dozers, one Type 1 Helicopter and one Air Attack.

No evacuations or injuries.


Cause: Lightning

Fire Behavior: Smoldering, creeping.

Closures: Roads surrounding each fire are closed for public safety purposes.

Structures: None threatened.

Percent Contained: 65 percent

Fuels:  Cheatgrass and pinyon/juniper trees.

Fire Crews/Resources: Transitioned today from Colt Coat’s Color Country Interagency Type III crew to Alan Syphus’ Type 4 Incident Command Team. two engines, one crew.

No evacuations or injuries.

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1 Comment

  • Murat July 14, 2012 at 11:26 am

    God’s answer to Gov. Herbert’s call to prayer: “Sure, have some rain, and a nice helping of lightning and wind, too!”

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