State Park Honoring Fallen Hotshots to Open This Week

This map shows some of the memorial plaques along the trail at Granite Mountain Hotshots Memorial State Park. | Courtesy of Arizona Governor's Office

A memorial in honor of the 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots who died in the 2013 Yarnell Hill Fire is set to open near Yarnell this week.

Granite Mountain Hotshots Memorial State Park will be open to the public Wednesday, November 30, Governor Doug Ducey's office announced. The day before (Tuesday, November 30), Ducey and other dignitaries will attend a dedication ceremony at the park.

The new park consists of a 7-mile round-trip hike to a memorial at the spot where the firefighters died. Along the trail, 19 plaques honor each of the hotshots, and interpretive signs describe the tragedy, which occurred when the hotshots lost radio contact with fire officials and were overcome by the fast-moving blaze. At the memorial site, a quiet path and benches offer places to reflect on the tragedy.

The purchase of 308 acres of land for the park was funded via a $500,000 appropriation by the state Legislature. A board consisting of hotshot family members and state and local agency representatives created plans for the memorial.

The park's trailhead can be accessed from the southbound lanes of State Route 89 southwest of Yarnell. Since there is limited parking at the trailhead, Arizona State Parks is operating a park-and-ride shuttle from Yarnell from November 30 to December 4. For more information, click here.

Those planning to hike all the way to the memorial site should dress appropriately and take food and water. Plan on a round-trip hike of at least four hours.

To learn more about Granite Mountain Hotshots Memorial State Park, visit www.granitemountainhotshotsmemorial.org.

Comments

Tuesday's date is not correct

A sad but perfect way to honor and mark the work they did and the tragedy that took their important young lives. Prayers for comfort to their loved ones.

May this bring recognition and honor to their young lives and the work they chose.

May this bring comfort to loved ones, knowing they were doing the work they chose though it cost them their young lives.

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