The Hilton Fire began Sunday afternoon in the bosque area east of the Rio Grande.
Russell Huffman | El Defensor Chieftain

This season’s first wildfire in Socorro County, the Hilton Fire, burned 187 acres by Monday morning. By Monday night, State Forestry and local crews began mopping up.

The fire was discovered Sunday at 2:34 p.m. Dust and ash blown by the wind were visible from the City of Socorro and the surrounding region.

First on the scene was Midway Fire Chief Marc Wheeler, who was designated the Incident Commander.

The wildfire, at 75 percent contained, has been confined to the bosque area east of the Rio Grande just south of Escondida off Bosquecito Road and the Quebradas Backcountry Byway, on property formerly owned by the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation.

Fuels include salt cedar, brush and grass. It has not posed a threat to nearby structures.

According to State Forestry’s George Ducker, by Tuesday evening, crews were monitoring for spot fires and ensuring that lines were maintained. He said multiple agencies, including Midway Fire Department, State Forestry, Bureau of Land Management, USFS, Socorro, Lanford, San Antonio, and Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District are holding the lines, which have been successful through Sunday and Monday’s wind event.

The cause is under investigation.