Sunday, June 13, 2010

Quick Horseshoe Fire Update

The Horseshoe Fire still burns in the Chiricahua Wilderness, working its way northeast along the ridge leading toward Portal Peak. As of this morning, about 2900 acres had burned, and the fire still stands at 25% containment.

Horseshoe Fire on June 13

This fire map shows continued filling-in of the burn along South Fork (drawn in a heavy blue line so you can see it more easily), in the vicinity of Maple Camp. The burn in the tributary of Log Canyon has filled in slightly, but not as much as I had surmised from what was told me.

The red spreading to the northeast shows the most active front of the fire. At the moment, a large plume of smoke is towering behind my house and behind Portal Peak. Here's a small caution to the fire information folks about communicating with the community: we're being repeatedly told that the fire is creeping, moving in increments of feet rather than acres, yet during the recent windy, three-day period (June 10-12), as we were being told that the fire was only creeping, the area of the burn jumped by about 500 acres. I'm sure that the fire team wants to keep everyone calm, yet we also need to know the truth. Please tell me if my critique is unwarranted... perhaps my idea of "creeping" is different from yours.

Horseshoe Fire behind Portal Peak
(Photos by Narca)

At this morning's fire meeting, people were told that June 22 will be a critical date, in terms of the fuel reaching a crucial level of dryness. At that point, fire behavior could become more intense. We need rain!

Today as we drove up to the high country, we passed a fire crew brushing and chipping along Cave Creek Canyon road immediately below the Paradise junction. Efforts to safeguard the canyon and the village of Portal are ongoing, and we thank the crews for their hard work.

Fire crew brushing the road in upper Cave Creek Canyon

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