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I get email news from Hannigan Meadow Lodge and today they said that Rt. 191 opened at 6AM this morning. The lodge has some smoke smell to clean up but came out OK. They said that from the lodge, you cannot see any fire damaged forest. But it is only a short ride away, of course.
 

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actually what will happen is other types of trees and brush will fill it in. It can take a thousand years to remake a ponderosa pine forest. In other areas up there the aspen type trees take over.
 

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I just returned from that very trip a copule of hours ago. Due to the pace of travel our group was going, no-one in our group had an opportunity in getting pics. We travelled south to north.

The "Arrow Tree" is still standing below the Blue Point View stop. A little bit of blowover fire damage is perhaps two miles below the Blue Point, but gets increasingly severe the further north one goes.

Kudo's to all our brave firefighters who stood in the way of this beast as it approached them.

From the blue all the way north to Springerville and even Eager, there is quite a bit of damage evident from the roads edge. But it is not a continual visual depiction of forestry carnage. Some fully blackened areas, but for the most part, one cannot even fathom a fire was anywhere near the alpine forest canopy and forest floor.

When you go, make sure you are REALLY careful around Alpine, as with the moisture runoff spilling over the road, the surface is like riding on snotty grease. As we approached Greer, Weather Service put out a Flash Flood Warning to the residents of Alpine, Nutrioso, Eager/Springerville and even Greer. The Little Colorado was spilling over its banks east of Alpine with reports of debris in those flows.

Lots of sandbags going up in Greer, as well. We saw evidence of black runoff going down normally dry slopes of hills, and one point of Hwy 373 heavily sandbagged with some runoff spilling over into the road.

Be vigilant in your travels tomorrow and ride smart, knowing that runoff has crossed the roadways causing possible unsafe riding conditions. Good time to drive 191 in a tracked vehicle, if you ask me.

- David
 

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Had a good ride. The tar strips at the very bottom before you reach the mine were wicked slick, but other than rocks in the road throughout the upper portion of the ride we had no condition issues.

Had a burger at Bear Wallow. Got drenched on the way to Show Low - 55 degrees and wet made for a chilly ride but we warmed up soon enough coming down the SRC.

The dust in the air coming back into PHX was incredible. You couldn't see the city at all.

12.5 hours and 547 miles door to door. Not bad timing when you consider there was 15 min on the front end waiting for everyone, and an hour for lunch, and a quick detour to see my mom in Lakeside. (always the good son)
 
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