National Parks Gallery
National Parks Gallery

Get Password

National Parks

Park News National Park News RSS Feed

Media Types
Web Cams

Update On July Flash Flood

Chiricahua National Monument

National Park News

On July 23rd, Bonita Creek experienced one of the largest flash floods to have occurred in the park in at least three decades, causing the closure of the Bonita Creek Campground. A storm dropped eight-tenths of an inch of rain on soils that had been saturated by several days of rain, producing six feet of floodwater. Bonita Creek is usually a dry wash, but this flash flood filled low water crossings and overtopped a foot bridge. Floodwater is known to have reached this height only twice in the past 30 years, including a 1993 flood in which a 2.8 inch rain event followed several days of lighter rains.  Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team hydrologists had predicted that such a flood would be approximately three times larger following the 2011 Horseshoe II Fire.  In anticipation of this increased flood risk, BAER implementation personnel had worked in collaboration with park staff to develop strategic closure plans for the campground. These closures prevented the entrapment of visitors and possible loss of property and injury. To view a video on Burned Area Emergency Response, visit an NPS-produced interactive case study at this link. Click on this link for more information on BAER.


Ruby on Rails