With the rains of the last week, fire conditions have been downgraded, but remain Moderate to High. Current as of July 17, 2017, according to Prescott National Forest: “(t)here are currently no fire restrictions on the Prescott National Forest. Please remember: fires must be attended at all times, fires must be extinguished completely (cold to the touch) before you leave.” Don’t become careless, as conditions may change in a very short time, with drying and winds creating local high risk conditions.
As we’ve seen this past week, with tragic consequences, we need to be aware and attentive to flash-flood threats in the region, particularly in areas burned over in the past months. Burned out vegetation zones are prone to rapid erosion and uncontrolled run-off, often creating dangerous flooding and mud/ash/debris flows very quickly. Pay attention to current weather forecasts and watches/warnings, and follow common sense advisories about not attempting to cross flooded roadways and trails.
Of particular importance in our creeks and riparian areas, fire can devastate wildlife habitat and recreation areas. Watson Woods Riparian Preserve has experienced several wildfires over the years – the most severe of which occurred in 1997 and burned almost 40 acres (which represents 1/3 of the Preserve). Impacts are still evident on the ground to a careful observer.
Please use caution while you are out and about.
For more and updated fire conditions information, please visit: