SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – Visitors to the Santa Fe National Forest are being advised to watch out for potential flooding in the area. Forest officials say springtime temperatures melting snow in the northern mountains have the potential of causing flooding.

Localized flooding from the rising Pecos River could also affect driving conditions in the area. Officials say impacted locations include all rivers and creeks in the Sangre de Cristo and Tusas mountains and all northern tributaries of the Rio Grande.

“Strong springtime winds, low humidity, and near to above-average temperatures will result in widespread critical fire weather conditions, especially at lower elevations, as well as increase [sic] snowmelt in the northern high country through at least Wednesday. Temperatures are expected to return to below-average on Thursday as a cold front sweeps the region. Lighter winds and below-average temperatures for Friday and this weekend should temporarily slow the rate of snowmelt in the high country,” said Kerry Jones, an air & water quality specialist/meteorologist, with the U.S. Forest Service.

Officials say people should use extreme caution near dangerously cold, fast-moving water and also be prepared for any flood advisories coming from the National Weather Service. The levels of streams, creeks, and rivers in the mountains will continue to be high with rapid rises in the near future.

The following areas in the Las Vegas/Pecos District remain closed:

  • Barillas Area
  • All portions of National Forest System (NFS) Road 261, starting at National Forest Boundary, until its terminus with the El Porvenir Campground.
  • All portions of NFS Road 263, 263B, 263C in its entirety until its terminus with Burro Basin Trailhead.
  • A portion of NFS Trail 251, the Skyline Trail, remains closed outside of the wilderness.
  • Consisting of all NFS lands within the El Porvenir Developed Recreation Site.
  • Baker Flat Picnic Site, Oak Flats Picnic Site, Big Pine Picnic Site, and Burro Basin Trailhead remain closed.