Active Wildfire Season Predicted In New Mexico

By Mónica Ortiz Uribe
April 08, 2014
Mónica Ortiz Uribe
The Silver Fire burned 138,705 acres last year in and around the Gila National Forest of New Mexico.

Fire officials in New Mexico are bracing for yet another active wildfire season. Ten fires have already burned this year. 

There is more grass on the ground in New Mexico thanks to a brief but heavy episode of rain late last year. The extra grass is now fuel for wildfires as drought conditions persist across the Southwest.

Already 6,000 acres have burned in New Mexico.

"The drought will really stress the trees and make them more available to burn," said Gabe Holguin, a fire specialist at the Gila National Forest.

Most fires this early in the season are started by humans, whether by campfire, fallen power lines or sparks from a moving car.

Two years ago New Mexico fought its largest wildfire on record. This year the state appropriated extra funding for forest thinning efforts around urban areas.