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Local Staff Ride Archive

Stand 1 - Control Road Overview

On June 25, 1990, a lightning strike sparked a fire beneath the Mogollon Rim about 10 miles northeast of Payson. Conditions were such that the fire burned quickly and within a matter of hours the Dude Fire had become extremely active. The fire was reported at 1315. Initial attack resources arrived at 1400 to find a very active10 acre fire. An hour later over 360 firefighters including engines, dozers, handcrews, aviation resources and a Type II Incident Management Team had been ordered. The Type II IMT was on site and assumed command of the fire by 1800.

Around 1930 the 20 person Perryville inmate crew arrived at the Payson Ranger District. The crew was instructed to eat and report to base camp. Following dinner they were redirected to the Bonita Creek Estates subdivision. At 0100 the Perryville crew arrived at the Subdivision and they were quickly moved to the junction of Walk Moore Canyon and the Control Road, they arrived there at 0230. By this time a Type I IMT had been ordered and was to shadow the Type II team beginning at 0600 and then transfer command at 1300.

The Mogollon Rim rises 1,000 feet above the ponderosa pines north and east of Payson. It often created its own weather. From mid-July through September, large thunderheads gather almost daily along the Rim's edge. The vegetation in the fire area was drastically different from what we see today. The vegetation consisted primarily of dense Ponderosa Pine with decadent Manzanita underbrush covered in needle-drape. Due to heavy ponderosa over story, visibility was extremely limited for resources working in Walk Moore Canyon as opposed to the unrestricted visibility of today. It is important to note the change in vegetation composition as it relates to how we now implement Lookouts, Communications, Escape Routes, and Safety Zones. (LCES).

This location provides an overall view of the area including the Mogollon Rim, Walk Moore Canyon, and the Bonita Creek Estates subdivision.

Parking for Stand 1 is in this undeveloped gravel borrow pit. From parking area walk up and over the Control Road to the east for Stand 1 location.

From Stand 1 participants can view the point of origin, Walk Moore Canyon, and Bonita Creek Estates.