Campground, trails closed in Saguaro National Park following Mica Bowl and Spud Rock fires

Campground, trails closed in Saguaro National Park following Mica Bowl and Spud Rock fires

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Due to the Mica Bowl and Spud Rock fires burning in the Rincon Mountains, Saguaro National Park has closed the Spud Rock Wilderness Campground and all trails on Mica Mountain east of the Arizona Trail. 

The Arizona Trail remains open, but officials say segments may be subject to short notice closure depending on fire activity.

Closed trails include:

  • Heartbreak Ridge
  • Turkey Creek
  • Deerhead Spring
  • East Slope
  • Devil’s Bathtub
  • Mica Meadow
  • Bonita
  • Fire Loop

Officials say rain and humidity are helping to moderate fire activity on the lightning-ignited Spud Rock and Mica Bowl Fires. The Rincon Remote Automated Weather Station (RAWS), located near Manning Camp, received Approximately 0.35 inches of rain in yesterday’s rainstorm. 

Firefighters are continuing to monitor and assess the Spud Rock and Mica Bowl Fires. The fires are burning in remote areas, in high elevation areas within the Saguaro Wilderness.

Officials say there are no immediate values at risk at this time. The Mica Bowl Fire is estimated at two acres with low fire activity. The Spud Rock Fire is estimated to be approximately 50 acres and 0.8 mile southeast of Manning Camp, a backcountry cabin located in Saguaro National Park.

Extreme temperatures have made it hazardous for firefighters to hike 8+ miles, with a 5,500+ feet gain in elevation, while carrying 45+ pounds of fire gear and extra water. The park used a helicopter to fly fire personnel to Manning Camp today to continue to assess current fire activity and values at risk. 

Fire managers will take action to protect value at risk, including Manning Camp, as needed, where they can do so safely and effectively. Challenges include extreme heat and logistical complexities associated with supporting firefighters with food, water, supplies, and medical response while working in remote areas.

Continued humidity and increasing chances of rain are expected to continue through the weekend. Fire managers will explore a range of options, including using existing trails and natural features like rocky outcroppings to help limit the fire’s spread. Pack mules and helicopters may be used to support firefighters as needed.

Smoke remains visible from Tucson, Redington Pass, Vail, Mescal, and the surrounding area. 

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