Update 1 | May 30, 2021 | 1015 PT

INCIDENT SUMMARY: The MCDONALD TANK FIRE is burning south of Tonto Lake near the Black River on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation and about 25 miles southeast of Whiteriver, Arizona that was sparked by an unknown cause last Sunday, May 23rd around 1350 MST.

McDonald Tank Fire aerial 20210524
Credit: Fort Apache Agency

TERRAIN CONDITIONS: Environment conditions consist of steep and rugged terrain, which has been a challenge to firefighters.

SIZE UP; The fire has burned about 3,576 acres of timber, brush and tall grass. Containment status has reached 31%.

STAFFING: There are 164 personnel assigned to this incident and are under the Command of IC Benjamin Plumb.

RESOURCES: 4 type 6 Engines, 1 type 3 Engine, 3 Interagency Hotshot Crews, 1 type 2 Crew, 1 type 2 Initial Attack Crew, 5 Water Tenders, 1 type 1 Helicopter, 1 type 3 Helicopter, 2 Dozers, and other miscellaneous incident management overhead.

INCIDENT COOPERATORS: BIA Forestry & Wildland Fire Management, San Carlos Apache Tribe, Fort Apache Agency/BIA.

ALERTS: The Fort Apache Indian Reservation has enacted stage 2 fire restrictions, prohibiting all campfires from 7:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. The San Carlos Apache Tribe initiated modified stage 2 fire restrictions, prohibiting all campfires from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

CLOSED: To ensure the safety for both firefighters and the public, the junction at Y70/Y30, the Y40/Y70 junction, and everything south of Maverick and Tonto Lake is temporarily closed. The Malay Gap Management Unit on the San Carlos Apache reservation is closed.  

THREATENED: The McDonald Tank fire area includes important lands to the White Mountain Apache people. Firefighters are working to protect the Ten O’ Diamonds Ranch House, the Paddy Creek Ranch, commercial timberlands, critical watersheds,  riparian areas, rangelands, and recreation and wilderness areas.

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