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Woodbury Fire east of Phoenix grows to 9,300 acres

(Twitter Photo/@TontoForest)

PHOENIX — The Woodbury Fire in the Superstition Mountains has grown to 9,300 acres with 0% percent containment, forest officials said Wednesday.

Hours earlier, the fire in the Tonto National Forest had reached 6,000 acres by late the previous day.

The human-caused fire broke out about 5 miles northwest of Superior around 1:30 p.m. on Saturday.

Smoke from the blaze was visible for miles, including the East Valley, but no structures were in danger.

According to officials, three crews and five engines were assigned to the fire, and a Type 1 team was expected to take over management Wednesday.

The blaze grew from an initial 500 acres Saturday to 1,400 acres Monday, then jumping several thousand more acres.

“This is in a very rugged area, a lot of brush and grass, especially into the wilderness area,” Dolores Garcia, a spokeswoman for the Bureau of Land Management, told KTAR News 92.3 FM.

“We are seeing some very strong gusty winds through the last couple of days, and last night we had some consistent … high winds above 15 miles an hour.”

Garcia said fewer than 200 firefighters were on scene Tuesday, but more resources will be added throughout the day.

Clay Templin, former Tonto forest chief, said the location and the hot weather are making it difficult to fight the fire.

“We end up having a variety of ecosystems that all end up having their own unique components, as far as how they burn,” he said.

“It’s definitely a tough piece of real estate, as well as the fact that it is unusually hot. This is probably the warmest place you’ll have in the Southwest.”

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Jim Cross contributed to this report.

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