Community News

News Release: Castle Fire continues its trek across the 19,632-acre planning area

August 5, 2019

 FREDONIA, Ariz., August 5, 2019Favorable weather conditions have led to additional growth on the Castle Fire. Firefighters are successfully conducting firing operations to secure the western edge of the planning area. The fire has moved across 11,900 acres since it was discovered on July 12th. A combination of fire suppression strategies have been used to confine the Castle Fire to the 19,632-acre planning area, where it has been allowed to function as a natural disturbance process.


Unburned fuels still exist along Lookout Canyon and to the east towards the interior of the planning area. Mastication work has been ongoing to fortify the western edge of the planning area which runs mostly along Forest Road 226 and Lookout Canyon. As the fire continues to travel west and south, the areas where the fire has left its footprint are continually being assessed for rehab work that includes suppression repair where the soil, disturbed by the construction of hand and dozer lines, is returned to a more natural state.


Waterbars, or small earth berms, are also being constructed in strategic locations to help minimize soil erosion. This type of work is implemented once the fire has left its mark, and when firefighters can safely access the burned areas. The Castle Fire has traveled across 60% of the 19,632-acre planning area.


Today's weather forecast: partly cloudy with a light chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon. The chance of showers and thunderstorms will continue through Tuesday.


The fire's origin is located about 11 miles south of Jacob Lake, 3 miles west of Highway 67, and just east of Forest Road 761 near Oquer Canyon.


The Castle Fire poses no danger to structures or other local infrastructure.


A Closure Order remains in effect for the Castle Fire area:



  • Discovery Date: July 12, 2019.
  • Cause: Lightning.
  • Location (point of origin): Approximately 11 miles south of Jacob Lake, 3 miles west of Highway 67, and just east of Forest Road 761 near Oquer Canyon on the North Kaibab Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest.
  • Current Resources: Two crews, seven engines, a helicopter, a dozer, a chipper, one water tender, four masticators, two feller bunchers, and miscellaneous fire management personnel. Total personnel: approximately 146.  
  • Current Size: About 11,900 acres and it has spread across about 60% of the 19,632-acre planning area.
  • Predicted Smoke Impacts: Smoke is expected to be visible from both the north and south rims of Grand Canyon National Park, Jacob Lake, Highway 67, Highway 89A, and Fredonia. 
  • Current Closures: Kaibab National Forest managers have implemented a temporary Closure Order for the Castle Fire area in order to provide for public and firefighter safety.  For specific information about the Closure Order, please visit:
  • Recent and Current Operations: Wildland fire crews plan to continue improving roads and other designated perimeters within which the fire can move. Current weather conditions may influence the use of firing operations which may be conducted as needed in order to strengthen control lines. A Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) is in place over the fire area. 

Kaibab National Forest information is available through the following sources: