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2011-09-24  

Pinery Canyon Road, AZ
2011-09-2423 by
 
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Pinery Canyon Road, AZ  
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More from my trip to the western Chiricahua Mountains to check out post fire conditions. After a brief stop at Chiricahua National Monument, drove up FR 42 to Onion Saddle, where the turnoff to Rustler Park is located. Looks like the fire burned entirely through the monument, and the road is closed past the campground. The fire burned lightly in the campground and it is open and in good shape. The fire burned west down Bonita Creek past the monument boundary aways, but the Faraway Ranch building is fine. Along FR 42 once you get into the forest the burn intensity really picked up, especially on the north side of the road past the turnoff to Methodist Camp. In the steep upper sections it pretty much burned everywhere. As expected, there was plenty of flood damage from the summer rains. An incredible amount of work was done to make the road passible again through the numerous side drainages. This is in addition to all the burned tree removal that was necessary. The next big rain will likely result in a road closure again. It is very steep on the western side, so I would imagine there will be problems for some time to come. I only drove about 2 miles down the Portal side from Onion Saddle, and it wasn't nearly as bad, but then again it isn't as steep. Looking down toward Cave Creek and Portal, the burn appeared to be less intense, at least along the road course.
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rwstorm's

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