Museum Fire Ignites North of Flagstaff

Jul 21, 2019

The Museum Fire is burning north of Flagstaff in the Dry Lake Hills on the Coconino National Forest.

The Museum Fire as seen from Buffalo Park in Flagstaff at about 2:45 p.m. Sun, July 21.
Credit Coconino National Forest

5:30 p.m. update: Coconino County emergency managers have ordered the "Set" stage of pre-evacuation for Mt. Elden Lookout Estates, north and west of Highway 89 and Silver Saddle, Hutchenson Acres, McCann Estates and all of Timberline, including Black Bill Park, Wupatki Trails, and Pine Mountain Estates. Residents are asked to pack emergency items and be prepared to evacuate. Also, Flagstaff neighborhoods including Cedar Hills, Shadow Mountain, Christmas Tree, Skyline, Swiss Manor, and Upper Greenlaw are now in the "ready" or "prepare now" stage.

In addition, the American Red Cross has opened a shelter for those affected at Sinagua Middle School, 3950 E. Butler Ave. 

4 p.m. update: The Museum Fire has grown to 400 acres and officials have ordered a Type 1 incident management team, which will take command tomorrow evening bringing additional resources.

The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office has issued a pre-evacuation notice for the area of Forest Road 420, or Schultz Pass Road, to Friedlein Prarie because of the Museum Fire. An evacuation has also been issued for recreationists in areas near Schultz Pass Road to U.S. Highway 89.  

“Hopefully this is something we’ll be able to get around, but if not and if it moves beyond a certain point which we should know in about an hour or two we’ll have to call in an emergency management team, but we’re not there yet,” says Brady Smith with the Coconino National Forest.

The blaze is burning in the Dry Lake Hills north of Flagstaff on the Coconino National Forest. As of 2:45 p.m. Sunday it had grown to about 200 acres from 5 acres when it was first called in around 11 o’clock this morning. There’s no word yet on possible containment numbers.

According to officials with the Coconino National Forest, about 200 personnel were fighting the blaze along with heavy air tankers and helicopters. Authorities are urging drivers on U.S. highways 89 and 180 to use caution because of fire personnel in the area. Smoke could impact Flagstaff and areas of east Flagstaff.

For more evacuation information, contact the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office. For more information on the Museum Fire itself, see the Coconino National Forest’s Twitter page.