Wildfire Season Already Here?

Wallow Fire 2011

As of yesterday, there were five wildfires burning in Arizona, and already the combined fires have scorched more than 6,000 acres…. Unfortunately, this appears to be a sign of things to come. We’ve experienced very little moisture and temperatures are already heating up — fast. Making matters worse for firefighters battling the Gladiator fire near Crown King, winds are playing a factor, making it difficult to contain…. As of 9:22 am, the human-caused fire burned 3,000 acres.

Besides the Gladiator blaze, firefighters in the state are also working to suppress the Sunflower fire near Payson.

From azcentral.com:

The Sunflower Fire 21 miles south of Payson in the Tonto National Forest, which by Sunday evening had spread to about 3,100 acres despite a large air and ground offensive.

More than 280 firefighters battled the fire, west of Arizona 87. The fire’s growth was attributed to rugged terrain, dry fuels and drought conditions. The active blaze ran to the east-northeast as firefighters worked to anchor it to the south and conducted burnouts west of Forest Road 201. The fire ignited Saturday morning and while it threatens no structures, firefighters are concerned about a power line southeast of it. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

The other three fires include, the Elwood Fire on the San Carlos Indian Reservation; the Bull Flat Fire on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation; and the Slaughter House Fire near Kingman.

 

5 Comments

Filed under Eco Issues, Mother Nature

5 responses to “Wildfire Season Already Here?

  1. azgirl

    I no longer live in Az. but look forward to the day I’m back “home”. These fires are so awful to see and hear about, has this become more common?

  2. Lois

    I live in Kingman and have seen the fire fighters here do an amazing job.
    They are working very hard to contain the fire; most of the fires here are contained very quickly.

  3. Scherry

    I live in the Tonto National Forest district in the mountains under the Mogollon Rim and east of Payson. For the past 10 years we have a history of dry hot windy springs which dry out the forest and have resulted in many wildfires, many caused by careless campers who have left unattended campfires. For the past 2 years the Tonto National Forest administrator in Phoenix closed the north side of the Control Road (FS64) to campfires but allowed campfires on the south side… in spite that last year fire apparatus was still at the Wallow Fire. Their defense was that it would impact Payson’s economy. This year many people joined in asking the National Forest Service to consider restricting campfires in the national forest from May to July due to the history of drought and until the monsoons begin. The response from the director in Phoenix was that “campfires are needed for the camping experience, our #1 priority is fighting fires, our #2 priority is reforesting.” This seems a short-sighted long-term plan. Taxpayers: last year the cost of fighting wildfires in AZ was over $2 million and over half of that was used to fight the Wallow Fire alone. How much is enough? How is the Wallow Fire area economy doing now? There are now seven wildfires in AZ and it’s only May.

  4. Daph

    In the southern part of the state we have already had a fire, burned up one of the few areas the fires last year didn’t. The School Fire topped off around 7500 acres in the US and was started in Mexico just like the Monument Fire…

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