Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Sawmill Fire Jumps Eastward

The Sawmill fire spread rapidly eastward over the northern ridge-line of the Santa Ritas yesterday afternoon. Photo above, one of many taken along Highway 83 by Ron Medvescek of the Arizona Daily Star, shows the fire near the Highway 83 Border Patrol check point. The strange windmill and cell tower combo is just a bit north of the check point. The Santa Rita Abbey that we visit once a month is a bit south and the Sisters are among those who have been evacuated to Sonoita.

Shown here are two tilts from the KEMX radar, which is a bit north of the fire, from a bit before 07:00 am MST. Hard to tell exactly where the active fire is, but thickest smoke in the plume appears to be east of Highway 83 now. The wildfire incident center has no maps yet available for the fire's footprint.

The RAWS station on the historic Empire Ranch was still operating when I checked last - observation summary at bottom shows winds gusting over 30 mph there before 0:700 am - very difficult situation for all the crews on site fighting the fire.

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