Volunteers help firefighters watch for fire danger in the Bosque

CORRALES, N.M (KRQE) – For many Corrales residents, like Lara Aho, there’s no better place to spend a summer evening than the Bosque. But Saturday night she did much more than just go for a run.

“Right out my back door there’s the Rio Grande with this beautiful forest and I think everyone feels a responsibility to keep it this way,” said Aho.

Aho is just one of approximately 100 volunteers signed up to patrol the Bosque this holiday weekend.

Aho said, “I listen for folks out by the river, you can kinda tell if there’s a group of people partying, that maybe you just wanna check them out.”

Aho and others are looking for fire danger. Corrales firefighters say with how dry it’s been, they’re on edge.

“Our biggest fear is someone coming into the Bosque and lighting camp fires, which we had recently,” said Corrales Firefighter Ryan Slota.

One of those fires, on Thursday, was discovered by a volunteer and called in before it could spread. Firefighters say that’s a great example of how extra sets of eyes can make the difference out here.

Slota said, “We can’t be everywhere at once. It’s just that increased presence, there’s only so many of us.”

It’s a partnership keeping the Bosque safe, one patrol at a time.

“We’re grateful that the Corrales Fire Department reached out to the public to ask for volunteers, because it’s a natural fit,” said Aho.

Volunteers say they’ll be out there periodically through Monday night and for the rest of the summer. This group has been organizing patrols of that area since 2010.

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