Archive for June, 2010

Flagstaff is on fire

Monday, June 21st, 2010

You can see the smoke from as far south as Sunset Point.

I drove up there today thinking, “Wow, the wind is really kicking up the smoke from the Eagle Rock fire…” The Eagle Rock fire has been burning for several days northwest of Flagstaff, but is mostly contained.

Wrong. Flagstaff had three different wildfires burning today, basically within city limits. Two are still going. One is still going unchecked.

Most threatening is the Schultz Fire, in the heavily wooded Schultz Pass separating Mt. Elden from the San Francisco Peaks. That fire, zero percent contained at this writing, is forcing evacuations, and has closed AZ 89 just north of town.

The Scultz fire has spread over 5000 acres, and its cause is unknown.

Flagstaff city spokeswoman Kimberly Ott told the Associated Press, “It’s torching, it’s crowning — all the things you don’t want it to do.” Winds gusts up to 50 mph are accelerating the fire.

Aside from life and property, this fire also threatens some of the best hiking trails in the area. Earlier today, there was some concern about some hikers still in the burn area, but they have all been accounted for.

Two other smaller fires were started and contained or controlled by the end of the day.

The Hardy Fire, which erupted in southeastern Flag – near the “country club” region is contained. It was started by an unattended campfire, and a California man has been arrested in connection.

A third fire flared up near western I-40 from a car fire, but was contained within hours.

However big the smoke plume looks in the photos, its bigger than that from in town.

NAZ Today has been providing good local coverage.