The Pack Creek Fire Closes on Containment, but Damage to the Whole Enchilada Trail is Still Unknown

Photo: Manti-La Sal Forest Service District

The bad news about the Pack Creek fire is that it’s still burning and a lot of trails in the La Sals are currently closed, including the Whole Enchilada, Burro Pass, Dry Fork, Moonlight Meadows, Pack Creek, and more. The good news is that the fire is more than three-quarters contained, and since we first wrote about the fire, the acreage burned hasn’t grown substantially.

As of Thursday morning, the Pack Creek fire was 8,952 acres. On June 15, the date of our first article and about a week after the fire had first started burning, the fire was roughly 8,200 acres.

Now, the fire response team winds down as responders seem to have a good handle on it, and both cloud cover and moisture have helped firefighters with containment. Teams also credit prior fuels reduction treatments over years in the area which helped “reduce fire behavior and provided firefighters a safer place to work during the Pack Creek Fire,” according to an update.

The La Sal Loop Road has opened back up, but as mentioned above many of the trails are still closed and the Manti-La Sals are closed entirely for recreation still. The Kokopelli trail intersection is the highest point in the Whole Enchilada system where shuttles in Moab are currently taking riders.

Moab Trail Mix, the trails group in the area, isn’t sure about the extent of the damage to the trails yet.

“It’s too early to tell,” said a rep from Trail Mix. They aren’t sure when they’ll be able to assess the damage. Moab Trail Mix had an agreement with the Forest Service for trail improvement work in August, however that may shift to trail restoration following the fire.

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