The Upper Valley and the Wheeler Peak Fire District are getting a new fire station. The new station will be built on the corner of Hwy 578 and Black Copper Canyon Rd. According to Deke Willis the Red River Fire Chief and also the Fire Chief of the Wheeler Peak Fire District, the new station will contain 3 bays and a classroom.
The new station will provide additional fire protection to the folks in the Upper Valley and beyond. The Wheeler Peak district is separate from the Red River Fire Dept. and encompasses most of the land surrounding Red River, including land North to the Midnight Meadows area, West to the Chevron mine between Red River and Questa, and also includes the Bobcat Pass area to the Colfax county line. The land was purchased through private donations and money appropriated from the state fire fund.
Funds to build the building will be obtained through the county and state and will first require a lease agreement with Taos County which the district is currently in the process of obtaining.
The building will be built with regard to the surrounding architecture and of similar design in order to blend into the area. There are also plans to build a large underground water storage tank in order to fill and re-fill the fire trucks when needed.
The existing Wheeler Peak fire station located on Hwy 578 at the entrance to 4th of July Canyon will remain and be used for the storage of additional equipment and apparatus. The existing station occupies National Forest land and is being used by the Wheeler Peak Fire District under a special use permit from the US Forest Service that severely restricts how the land is used and what improvements can be made to the building. By having their own land, the fire district will now have much more leeway and in turn be able to provide additional and higher quality services to the community.
As with all rural fire depts., they gladly accept donations and are always looking for great volunteers. If you have interest in helping in any way, contact Fire Chief Deke Willis at the Red River Fire Dept. 575-754-6567