Tonto National Forest officials have announced an area closure due to impending monsoon activity.
Tonto officials say that in the next few weeks it is possible that several areas in the forest will suffer the extreme effects of summer flooding. One of those areas is the Sunflower burn area.
There is little ground vegetation left in the burn area to absorb and hold back rainwater. When heavy rain falls over burnt steep terrain, the water quickly rushes downhill, carrying loose soils, ash and debris.
The area being immediately closed is the Sycamore Creek area, an extension of the already established Sunflower fire closure area which includes the upper section of Sycamote Creek.
The restricted area includes all National Forest System lands, roads and trails within the exterior boundaries as follows:
West of Highway 87: From the junction of State Highway 87 and FR 1847 west following FR 1847 to the forest boundary, north along the forest boundary to the Mesa Ranger District boundary, northeast along the Mesa Ranger District boundary to FR 3456, then east following FR 3456 to Highway 87, and Highway 87 south to the junction of Highway 87 and FR 1847.
East of Highway 87: Forest Road 1704 is closed.