New BLM crew in Arizona has a name

Aravaipa Hotshots logoThe new crew that the Bureau of Land Management is establishing in southern Arizona now has a name — Aravaipa. Last month the BLM announced that the crew will be stationed at Fort Huachuca thanks to a partnership between the BLM and U.S. Army. The agency hopes that after two to three years the crew will meet the standards to be designated as a Type 1 Hotshot Crew.

“The name for a hotshot crew is about representing where you come from, so we selected something that people in southeast Arizona can connect to,” said Timothy Shannon, Gila District Manager.

The BLM has also selected the superintendent for the new Aravaipa crew. Greg Smith, a seasoned wildland fire manager with more than 22 years of experience, will come on board in December, and will assist in hiring, training and supervising the 20-person unit. Smith has extensive experience as a hotshot superintendent with the Ironwood Hotshots, Jackson Hotshots and the Globe Hotshots and is also a four-year military veteran of the U.S. Navy.

Recruitment for the crew will emphasize the selection of military veterans, consistent with BLM’s national emphasis on bringing veterans into the wildfire workforce. The BLM’s long-term goal is for a crew made up entirely of veterans.

The crew will be seeking official hotshot designation during an intensive two to three year certification process, and will be stationed Ft Huachuca thanks to a partnership between the BLM and the U.S. Army.

Two crew captain job openings will be posted Nov. 11 at In total, six year-round and 13 seasonal job positions will be posted in the coming months.

The Aravaipa crew will be the only hotshot crew (also known as a Type 1 crew) in Southern Arizona and one of only 12 BLM hotshot crews nationwide.

For more information about available crew positions, contact Lathe Evans at (928) 348-4514.

Thanks and a tip of the hat go out to Tom.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

4 thoughts on “New BLM crew in Arizona has a name”

  1. Good question about the naming. Would it be named after the canyon northeast of Tucson, which is more than a hundred miles north of Ft. Huachuca, or are there closer “laughing waters” to hand, such as the San Pedro River, that might be called this?

    Or, perhaps, is the crew named for the Aravaipa band of Apaches, who roamed the region, and battled American fur trappers, but mostly again in the area east/northeast of Tucson?

  2. The Aravaipa IHC will be the first federally funded IHC in Southern Arizona since the Coronado NF’s Catalina IHC was moved to the Lincoln NF at the end of the 1982 fire season, and became the Sacramento IHC in 1983.

  3. All our best wishes for your continued success. Northern Arizona consolidated fire department. Retirement board member! Carl Stough


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