A fire ripping through a heavily forested canyon in northern Arizona had burned nearly 1,000 acres and left several cabins evacuated by midday Wednesday.
The fire began just north of Sedona's Slide Rock State Park, a popular hiking and vacation destination, and has been traveling northward through a canyon. By early morning Wednesday, the blaze had scorched 450 acres, an estimate that was doubled hours later as low-humidity, high-wind conditions persisted. The fire was also pushing up the canyon's steep hillsides.
In the early morning, U.S. Forest Service officials said 100 houses and vacation cabins were under threat to the north of the state park.
"I have a feeling our trip will have to be canceled," she said by phone Wednesday. "This is just devastating for people who know these cabins. There's a lot of history there."
"I'm just hoping nothing happens to those cabins," Lwin said, noting her honeymoon was spent at the Butterfly Garden. "It's an all-natural environment around there, and now it's all gone because of a human."
More than 200 people were helping to fight the blaze, including some firefighters who worked on wildfires that took out several thousand acres in San Diego a week ago.
Noel said authorities suspect the fire was sparked in Oak Creek Canyon, between Flood Rock and Halfway Picnic Area.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Forest Service said it added four more aircraft to its fleet to contend with "what is shaping up to be a catastrophic fire season in the Southwest."
The agency cited climate change, forest diseases and suburban sprawl combined had extended the annual fire season by more than two months during the last 30 years.