Santa Fe National Forest opens Monday, July 9- PRESS RELEASE
SANTA FE, NM – July 7, 2018 – For Immediate Release. Due to several days of higher humidity and rain, the Santa Fe National Forest (SFNF) will lift the closure order and stage 2 fire restrictions on Monday, July 9 at 8:00 a.m. for the first time since entering full forest closure on June 1.
The forest remained closed for public safety and forest health reasons until conditions improved to acceptable levels, according to forest leadership.
“We noticed conditions starting to improve two weeks ago when moisture levels increased due to higher humidity,” said James Melonas, forest supervisor.
“The recent rain is the beginning of what we can expect to be a good monsoon season. The Carson and Cibola National Forests are closely monitoring local conditions to determine the safe timing for the lifting of any closures and restrictions.”
Northern New Mexico’s extreme drought conditions in 2018 helped create the dry conditions that led to the SFNF closure, but the monsoons are soon to remedy the drought across the state.
“Drought outlook has the drought across New Mexico being entirely mitigated through the summer monsoon season,” said Chuck Maxwell, predictive services meteorologist. The drought outlook is an NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) product that can be found online at http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/expert_assessment/season_drought.png.