Thanks for the bad nooze Ryan. I called the Payson Ranger District of Tonto NF this a.m. and they told me pretty much the same thing. Not only are parts of Tonto NF restricted, but much of the forest under the rim is closed to anything.
. This includes open campfires, backpacking, day hiking, mtn biking and even car camping in the established FS campgrounds - all closed. The ranger I spoke with said that soil moisture content and water availability in the closed areas is the worst they have ever recorded since they've kept records - 104 years. Yikes. The recent Springer and Indian fires sealed the decision to lock the door.
Here's a Tonto NF map that shows both the restricted and closed areas:
http://www.fs.fed.us/r3/tonto/news/pres ... re_map.htm
I had an overnighter planned up at Horton Spring in three weeks. Anybody have another suggestion? Thanks.