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Arizona, Part 4 - Schultz Fire
Lens: Various Camera: K20D & K10D Photo Location: Flagstaff, Az 
Posted By: UpNorth, 04-21-2011, 07:33 AM

Continuing our trek through Arizona last summer, our plan for Sunday, June 20th was to spend a little more time in Flagstaff, head up to the Arizona Snowbowl ski area to take in the view, and then start heading for the Grand Canyon.

The Arizona Snowbowl is a ski resort in the winter, but in the summer they utilize one of the chair lifts like this..... "Our Skyride shuttles you to an elevation of 11,500 feet for panoramic views atop this extinct volcano. From this elevation, you can see over 70 miles of world-class scenery including the Grand Canyon and downtown Flagstaff."
We got to the Snowbowl a little after 1:00, and as we were walking from the parking lot up to the chalet we noticed a small white plume of smoke barely visable on the top of the hill. When we got to the chalet they were still loading folks on the chairlift, but as we were standing in line behind one other group, waiting to buy our "lift tickets"all of a sudden all of the employees started running around while talking on their walkie talkies. After a couple of minutes the ticket counter person came back and said she was sorry - but they wouldn't be selling any more tickets, because of the fire at the top of the mountain.
We went back outside to watch, and at about 1:20 I took this shot.....

#1


This was the start of what would become known as the Schultz Fire. It made national news all week due to its size, and by the time we headed back through Flagstaff the following weekend it had consumed over 14,000 acres and was only 40% contained. Just to give you an idea of how fast it grew, we stood and watched it for about 20 minutes before we decided to pack it in and start heading for the Grand Canyon. Here's a sequence of pics I took over that 20 minute time span.....


#2



#3



#4



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Finally we headed out. Once we got out of the park and on the highway, I had to pull over for one last shot. This was taken about an hour after the first shot above, and I'm guessing we were about 7 or 8 miles from the base of the hill where the other shots were taken. This thing was HUGE - and it was just getting started!

#7


By the time we were leaving Arizona they had figured out it had been started by someone not putting out their campfire, and they had either arrested someone or at least had a suspect.

Next stop will be the never-before-photgraphed Grand Canyon.
In a few days.....

Thanks for looking,

Tim
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04-21-2011, 08:17 AM   #2
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Interesting photos, thanks for sharing. Fires like that always leave me conflicted. On one hand, our management of fires has had negative environmental impact in many forests (where some species depend on occasional fires!); OTOH, a fire is hard to see as anything BUT negative, particularly when you think of all the old trees and animals destroyed by it.
04-21-2011, 10:59 AM   #3
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Tim, that fire was really boiling, great shots and will see you at the Grand Canyon. Bob
04-21-2011, 12:24 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by jstevewhite Quote
Interesting photos, thanks for sharing. Fires like that always leave me conflicted. On one hand, our management of fires has had negative environmental impact in many forests (where some species depend on occasional fires!); OTOH, a fire is hard to see as anything BUT negative, particularly when you think of all the old trees and animals destroyed by it.
Thanks jsteve. I know what you mean. "Circle of life" I guess - As fires have been around long before man arrived here, and as you note it's actually a necessity for some species.


QuoteOriginally posted by Bob Harris Quote
Tim, that fire was really boiling, great shots and will see you at the Grand Canyon. Bob
Boy Bob - You aren't kidding. The reason we stood there and watched it for a good 20 minutes is that it was changing every minute, and really something to see - how fast it spread, how big it got in a short period of time, etc. You just can't beat nature - good or bad.

Thanks for commenting,

Tim

04-21-2011, 03:51 PM   #5
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Sharp and colorful photos - and dramatic. Fires like this can be tragic, but they look majestic from a distance.

Jer
04-21-2011, 07:32 PM   #6
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Wowza, that's impressive. Especially that last shot from Harts Prairie. Unless you've seen the peaks in person you don't realize the size of the mountains, or that fire.
04-21-2011, 08:13 PM   #7
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Wow, that is a massive cloud of smoke. How sad it was started by an unextinguished camp fire. You've captured the scenes well here. Looking forward to seeing the rest of your trip.
04-21-2011, 08:55 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sailor Quote
Sharp and colorful photos - and dramatic. Fires like this can be tragic, but they look majestic from a distance.

Jer
Thanks Jer. And you're right - it was really something to see in person, from a safe distance!


Tim

04-22-2011, 06:42 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by VaughnA Quote
Wowza, that's impressive. Especially that last shot from Harts Prairie. Unless you've seen the peaks in person you don't realize the size of the mountains, or that fire.
QuoteOriginally posted by BlueBubbleBoy Quote
Wow, that is a massive cloud of smoke. How sad it was started by an unextinguished camp fire. You've captured the scenes well here. Looking forward to seeing the rest of your trip.
Thanks Vaughn & Barry. I'm glad you can comprehend how big this was. The pictures don't do it justice. The plume of smoke was HUGE when we were up on the hill, and the only reason I stopped and took that last photo was because I couldn't believe how much larger it had grown by the time we got out of the park.

It was really something to see in person, as we don't ANYTHING like that up here in the "Land of 10,000 Lakes" - too much water, I guess!

Thanks for taking the time to look,

Tim
04-22-2011, 07:23 AM   #10
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These fires can be so costly. One has to watch closely as they can jump huge distances and people have been caught in the middle. JIM
04-22-2011, 07:29 AM   #11
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Wow, never seen anything lie that! Thanks for showing us!
04-22-2011, 09:33 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jimbo Quote
These fires can be so costly. One has to watch closely as they can jump huge distances and people have been caught in the middle. JIM
You're right Jim. All they were talking about out there at that time was how lucky they were that the winds were blowing AWAY from Flagstaff - or it could have been much worse.

Tim
04-22-2011, 09:35 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by the swede Quote
Wow, never seen anything lie that! Thanks for showing us!
Thanks for taking a look Swede!

Tim
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