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Forest officials reduce Tunnel Fire closure area for access to Lockett Meadow, Inner Basin

Tunnel Fire 4/19/22
Brady Smith/USFS
The Tunnel Fire exploded in growth on Tue, April 19, 2022 as heavy winds funneled it to the northeast. It's burned at least two dozen homes and forced the evacuation of more than 2,000 people.

Officials with the Coconino National Forest say they’ve reduced the size of the closure area for the Tunnel Fire northeast of Flagstaff.

The move is meant to allow for increased access and recreation in Lockett Meadow and the inner basin via Forest Road 552.

A Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team has completed its assessment of the burn. The Flagstaff Ranger District has determined it is safe to reduce the size of the closure in that area.

The newly reduced closure is set to remain in effect until June 20. However, the area may be reduced again in the future or may be completely rescinded before that date if conditions allow, according to forest managers.