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Fire on Mt. Wrightson (Santa Rita Mtns)

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SkyIslandHiker
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Fire on Mt. Wrightson (Santa Rita Mtns)

Postby SkyIslandHiker » Jul 02 2017 9:27 pm

This one has not yet made the local media (nor InciWeb) who are pre-occupied with the Burro Fire. Several hiking friends reported seeing a smoke plume late this afternoon around the 8,000 foot level near or SW of Bellows Spring. One friend saw the lightening strike that sparked the fire followed by smoke. Another is seeing a glow tonight from that area. I'm in Show Low so I don't have a view of "my backyard playground" going up in flames :(

This is a terrible year for fires in southern Arizona. This Mt. Wrightson fire would be the sixth active fire right now in the Coronado National Forest.

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SkyIslandHiker
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Re: Fire on Mt. Wrightson (Santa Rita Mtns)

Postby SkyIslandHiker » Jul 03 2017 7:16 am

This morning one friend in Green Valley reports: "Still a little smoke, definitely not bigger". Another friend in Sahuarita who saw smoke yesterday can't see any smoke this morning. Still waiting to hear from a third friend who witnessed the lightening strike.

This sounds like a very small fire so far; hopefully it will burn itself out.

Nothing in the media yet but this was posted on YouTube last night:
[ youtube video ]

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SkyIslandHiker
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Re: Fire on Mt. Wrightson (Santa Rita Mtns)

Postby SkyIslandHiker » Jul 03 2017 11:08 am

Still nothing official or in local media outlets re the fire on Mt. Wrightson. However, my hiking friend that witnessed the lightening strike yesterday reports the following as of 9:24am this morning:

"Yes we can still see smoke. Fire is in more than one spot now. We have observed two drops by BIG Helicopters. Then another helicopter came in to check out one of the fires. Last night when it was dark outside, we could see flames burning in at least 4 places."

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SkyIslandHiker
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Re: Fire on Mt. Wrightson (Santa Rita Mtns)

Postby SkyIslandHiker » Jul 03 2017 5:35 pm

As we approached the Santa Ritas on the drive home from Show Low this afternoon, I was relieved to see no smoke.

Received this noontime update from a friend who had witnessed the lightening strike:

"Called the Nogales Ranger Station. They said that they have a pretty good hold on the fire. As of right now, no closures. Since they have a pretty good hold, there will not be any closures unless something changes. They dumped water on the fire from Patagonia Lake. They have 2 engines on it."

So it would appear that Mt. Wrightson has dodged a bullet for now :D

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Re: Fire on Mt. Wrightson (Santa Rita Mtns)

Postby PrestonSands » Jul 04 2017 7:19 pm

Thank you for the updates! Scary times for our sky islands right now.
Come ye sweltering denizens of the plains to the mountains and enjoy life -Colorado Miner, July 25, 1867

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Re: Fire on Mt. Wrightson (Santa Rita Mtns)

Postby SkyIslandHiker » Jul 04 2017 7:31 pm

I hiked to the summit this morning. Other can a couple fire trucks in the parking lot and the sounds of chainsaws near Bellows Spring, you would never know there had been a fire. The fire crew was doing mop up work on the top of a ridge to the southwest of Bellows Spring.

Someone entered in the summit log that they watched helicopters dump 8 loads of water from Patagonia Lake on the fire yesterday.


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