Lightning ignites fire in Saul’s Canyon
By Robert Stevens
EPHRAIM—Fire crews are controlling a lightning-caused fire on Sanpitch Mountain, located about 20 miles northwest of Ephraim in the Manti-La Sal National Forest. The fire burned for several days before being discovered.
The fire was ignited by lighting on Monday, May 14. Crews only began actively managing the fire on Wednesday, May 16, and by Thursday, May 17, it had grown to 110 acres while under active monitoring by fire crews.
The fire will be allowed to burn to reduce heavy fuels in the area. Crews will allow the fire to consume 140 acres as part of a controlled burn, the Forest Service stated.
Most of the fire is currently burning white fir and dead trees in Saul’s Canyon on the Sanpitch Mountain.
Due to the high elevation of the fire, the Forest Service expects that smoke will be visible from I-15, Juab, Sanpete, and Sevier counties and will be seen for over a week. The fire is expected to last a few days.
Spring vegetation has emerged and fire managers have decided that conditions are excellent for maintaining and controlling the fire. The managed fire can reduce the risk of wildfire by reducing hazardous fuels and aiding aspen regeneration. Beneficial fires restore and maintain healthy forests and rangeland, and improve wildlife habitat.
The Saul’s Canyon fire managers will review the fire’s progress and weather forecasts to determine if the fire will stay in pre-designated boundaries and if resource objectives are being met. Fire crews will be monitoring its movement to assure the protection of life and property.
If necessary, the fire will be actively suppressed, the Forest Service reported.