Stephen Pyne

As I look out my window, the smoke from the Bush fire is belching upward behind the fabled profile of the Superstition Mountains. The fire has closed Highway 87 that joins the Phoenix metro area to Payson, one of its exurbs. Some small communities are evacuating.

Otherwise the fire is foraging widely across Tonto National Forest and the Mazatzal Mountains, through wilderness and scattered inholdings alike. At the moment it’s 90,000 acres and 5% contained. If it can’t be stopped at Highway 188 and Lake Roosevelt, it will burn until the monsoon rains arrive. But this is not what I find interesting.

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