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Woodbury Fire

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Just read this on a facebbok page, is call arizona hiking, looks like the whole wilderness might burn, please read.

Just got back from another Woodbury Fire meeting from Roosevelt. The news is not good, in fact I would say it is completely devastating.

To make a long meeting short I will get right to it. Currently 0% containment and over 700 personal working the fire. As of right now they have stopped the northern movement of the fire at highway 88 and the Tortilla TH area due to the back burning that has been done there. They are continuing to back burn moving west towards Tortilla Flat. They have placed a sprinkler system around Tortilla Flat to try and protect it once the fire gets there. Also the owner of Reavis Mountain School (forgot his name) spoke for a minute and he is working with a crew to clear brush around the school area. Now the devastating news. Due to the extreme steepness of the terrain in the majority of the fire area they are unable to get crews on the ground to fight it. They also are not able to use air support without a crew on the ground in the area, apparently they work together. With that said the plan right now is to unfortunately let it burn until it moves closer to 88 on the east side and north side and comes off the cliffs on the west side. They have planned points on the east side on where they can start fighting it and are waiting for it to burn it's way through Reavis Canyon, Campaign Creek , Fish Creek.

I have included the latest fire map. As you can see the fire has made it's way up Reavis Saddle and is closing in on the ranch. They advised that it took a couple days for it to move on the east side as the manzanita was so thick it did not want to burn originally, however it has dried out the past couple days and they expect the fire to start to accelerate through the Reavis area. I have circled the fire on the east side in pink coming up the saddle with the Ranch and Roger's Canyon Cliff Dwellings circled in green. After the meeting I spoke to the Roosevelt Ranger one on one and they are fully expecting the fire to take the Reavis ranch area including the orchards and are hoping the Rogers Canyon Cliff Dwellings survive the fire due to their height in the canyon.

On the West side, they are also expecting it to continue it's movement and you can see on the map today the fire has now moved into Barks Canyon and is making it's way down La Barge Canyon to Charlebois and is moving into Boulder Canyon (circled in pink). On the south side the fire is sitting on top of Buzzards Roost where they may drop some water on it to stop that piece of the fire. The remaining south side end has been cold for a couple days (black line).

They did say the fire will not be out until the monsoons arrive and they are predicting a later then normal start this season, looking like the end of July.

I think that's about all that I can remember. Like I said beyond devastating news as we could be potentially watching 75% or more of the Superstition Wilderness burn in this fire. Like a lot of people here the Superstition are more then just a wilderness to me and words absolutely can not express how I am currently feeling.

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With record winter rains, heavy grasses and brush within the wilderness, it was pretty obvious what was gonna happen. When that fire started at the Woodbury Trailhead, I made a statement on Twitter that they’ll never get a handle on this fire and that it’ll burn all the way to Apache and Canyon lakes. I might right! 

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Horrible, horrible, so sad to hear. Feel bad for all the people who spend lots of time there recreating, hiking, hunting, etc. Hopefully a miracle happens 🙏.

I've personally not spent time there but have lots of spots circled on the map with the intention to explore sometime including Reavis Ranch and the orchard, the numerous native sites too.

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Bummed for all involved. Let's hope all are safe and it helps the area for the future. 

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I was 3 miles from the front on Friday at a radio site we built for MCSO.  Got chased out by hot shot crews at 9:00am.  It is right at the top of Fish Creek Hill.

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2 hours ago, AZ8 said:

With record winter rains, heavy grasses and brush within the wilderness, it was pretty obvious what was gonna happen. When that fire started at the Woodbury Trailhead, I made a statement on Twitter that they’ll never get a handle on this fire and that it’ll burn all the way to Apache and Canyon lakes. I might right! 

yeah its fukked. 

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3 hours ago, MULEPACKHUNTER said:

Bummed for all involved. Let's hope all are safe and it helps the area for the future. 

Yeah, the habitat will come back better than ever. But the cliff dwellings and the orchard could be gone forever. 

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9 hours ago, Flatlander said:

Yeah, the habitat will come back better than ever. But the cliff dwellings and the orchard could be gone forever. 

I don't think the fire will hurt the dwellings , I think people will be shocked if it exposes a bunch that weren't known before. 

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The Superstitions hold a special place in my heart. It's where I first started hunting when I came to Az. I've hunted the Reeves Ranch area and stayed in the cabin several times and camped in the orchard as well. I've rode horses in there and the wife and I have hiked in several places in our younger days. I have always called it my playground. Yes it saddens me that so much is burning. I hope and pray the monsoons get here fast but it's not looking good. ☹️

TJ

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this past january i hunted around Tortilla Pass and left my truck at the Woodbury Trailhead, there i met this 2 ladies that were the ranchers there, they were super nice people and i have to tell you i feel terrible for them.

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