New Mexico fire razes 34,000 acres, 40 structures
Ruidoso, NM, United States (4E) – Some 600 firefighters are battling a raging fire in part of the Lincoln National Forest near Ruidoso in southeastern New Mexico on Monday as it already razed more than 34,000 acres of pines and destroyed 40 structures.
The crew, which 200 National Guard troops and firemen from the Albuquerque Fire Department, have yet to contain the fire forcing the evacuation of all campgrounds west of Bonito Lake; subdivisions of Villa Madonna, Enchanted Forest, Nogal Canyon, Angus, Sierra Vista, Sontara, Copper Canyon, Alto Alps and Loma Grande; Eagle Lakes Campground, Eagle Creek summer homes.
Residents of the Upper Canyon, Perk Canyon, Brady Canyon, Alpine Village, Grindstone, Black Forest and Ponderosa Heights have been alerted for possible evacuation.
Evacuation shelters were put up at the Ruidoso High School gym, First Baptist Church on Country Club Road, Church of Christ on Sudderth Road in Ruidoso, and Trinity Baptist Church in Capitan.
Authorities also closed the State Highway 532, Ski Run Road, State Highway 48 to Capitan, and Highway 37 to Highway 380 to traffic. The entire White Mountain Wilderness and that portion of the Smokey Bear Ranger District south of N.M. 380 to the Mescalero Apache Reservation boundary was also closed.
A lightning sparked the fire on June 4.