Jar Complex Fire Grows, Restores Forest Health

Published: Wednesday, July 8, 2015 - 2:25pm
Updated: Wednesday, July 8, 2015 - 2:29pm
Kaibab National Forest
The Mason Fire is the largest of the four fires and has burned around 500 acres.
Kaibab National Forest
Crews work to keep the Jar Complex Fire within designated boundaries
Kaibab National Forest
The Mason Fire is part of the Jar Complex Fire near the Town of Tusayan.

The Jar Complex Fire, which is burning southeast of the town of Tusayan, is looking good according to forest officials. The fire, which is made up of four separate fires, was caused by lightning strikes, but instead of putting the fire out, fire managers are letting this blaze do what nature intended.

When it comes to forest fires, it is not typical to hear fire managers say good things about a blaze, especially if it’s growing. 

But the Jar Complex Fire is one of those exceptions. Fire managers are letting the fire burn up forest fuels in order to improve forest health. The biggest blaze within the complex is the Mason Fire, which has already burned around 500 acres and is growing.

"This is actually the time of year historically when fires would have burned naturally across the landscape," said Jackie Banks with Kaibab National Forest. "You would have had a monsoon season, and a lightning strike would have occurred. The fire would have moved around and done its thing naturally across the forest floor, and that’s really what we’re trying to mimic with these managed fires."

Banks says the fire is burning at a low to moderate intensity. Smoke from the fire might be visible from Desert View in the Grand Canyon, but it won’t pose any issues from a sightseeing perspective.

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