North Rim roads to open after Fuller Fire

The Fuller Fire on the North Rim of Grand Canyon burned around 14,385 acres June 29-July 25. Photo/NPS, USFS

The Fuller Fire on the North Rim of Grand Canyon burned around 14,385 acres June 29-July 25. Photo/NPS, USFS

GRAND CANYON - NORTH RIM, Ariz. - Work continues along Cape Royal and Imperial Point Roads on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon in anticipation of opening roads to park visitors after Fuller Fire burns over 14,000 acres.

As of July 25, personnel working on the lightning caused wilfire was scaled down from 540 to 290 people. The fire burned 14,385 acres from June 29-July 25.

Point Imperial and Cape Royal Roads opened July 24, along with Cape Royal Trail, Cape Final Trail and Cliff Springs Trail.

Incident managers said this achieves the objective to promote quality visitor experience by providing sound information and educational opportunities associated with the natural role of fire in the ecosystem. Visitors driving through the area where the fire has burned, were met by information officers and park interpreters located at the viewpoint parking lots.

As of July 25, fire crews will continue to improve contingency firelines and assist with responding to any new fire starts within the Grand Canyon National Park and Kaibab National Forest North Zone area. Within the Saddle Mountain Wilderness area, the western and northern sections of the fire are expecting an increase in fire activity as predicted conditions dry out. Rain fell over some portions of the fire July 24.

Fire managers said they measure success in managing a wildfire by the percentage of containment and while containment is a long-term goal for the Fuller Fire, other objectives such as firefighter and public safety, protecting homes and infrastructure and minimizing impact on endangered species and archeological sites are considered.

"We are taking a holistic, long-term approach to the Fuller Fire," said Ed Hiatt, north zone interagency fire management officer. "The fire could naturally help restore the forest until snowfall and we are fully prepared for that possibility."

Southwest winds will push any smoke produced to the northeast. More information on smoke and your health is available at http://wildlandfire.az.gov/links.asp#Smoke.

Highway 67, North Rim Visitor Center, Lodge and Campground, Point Imperial and Cape Royal Roads, Cape Royal Trail, Cape Final Trail, Cliff Springs Trail and Forest Service Road (FSR) 22 and Rainbow Rim Trail on the Kaibab National Forest are open.

Closures still in place include all U.S. Forest Service areas east of Highway 67 and south of Tater Ridge Road (FSR 213) and east of House Rock Valley Rd (FSR 8910). The Arizona Trail, Lindberg Hill north to the Park boundary, Ken Patrick Trail: starting at the Uncle Jim Trail junction, Point Imperial Trail, Nankoweap Trail, Saddle Mountain Trail and South Canyon Trail are also closed. Road closures include Fuller Canyon Road FSR 610 and FSR 611.

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