Last update: January 23rd, 2020 at 8:00 am
Twenty miles north of Tucson, Arizona, the Aspen Fire raged through the Coronado National Forest in June and July 2003. The fire began on June 17, 2003, and over the next few weeks grew to more than 40,000 acres. Hundreds of homes and businesses in communities on Mount Lemmon were burned, and hundreds of people have been evacuated from the area as fire fighters struggle to contain the blaze in difficult terrain under hot, dry, windy conditions.
In these Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) images from the Terra (top) and Aqua (bottom) satellites between mid-June and July 2003, several fires have been detected across the Southwest and are marked with red dots. The Aspen Fire, south or southwest of center in most images, has the largest smoke plume of all the fires. The grayish patch to the southwest of that fire is the city of Tucson.