Afternoon Fire Update From the US Forest Service
Six Rivers National Forest lightning fires – Afternoon Update
EUREKA, California, August 4, 2015 – Firefighters continue to battle multiple wildfires, sparked by lightning late last week, on the Six Rivers National Forest:
- Gasquet Complex – Gasquet Ranger District: There are six active fires for a total of 838 acres with 2 percent containment. The Bear Fire has burned 150 acres; the Coon Fire, 225 acres; the Peak Fire, 200 acres; the Summit Fire, 3 acres; the Williams Fire, 180 acres; and the Feeder Fire, 80 acres. The fires are now being managed by Southern California Interagency Incident Management Team (IMT) 2 with David Kelly as incident commander. Their incident command post (ICP) is at the Mountain Middle School, in Gasquet.
Due to the proximity to fires and fire traffic, travel is not recommended in the following areas: South Kelsey Trail, Summit Trail, Gunbarrel Trail, Bear Basin Butte Lookout, and Gasquet-Orleans Road at the gate.
- Orleans Ranger District: No changes for district’s eight fires. The Beans Fire was contained at 0.4 acres. The Lonesome Fire was contained at 1.5 acres. The Wooley Fire is 7 acres, 55 percent contained, and about 1.5 mile from the Tom Taylor Cabin, in the Marble Mountain Wilderness. The Nickowitz Fire is 60 acres and 45 percent contained. Acreage estimates are unavailable for the Sawtooth, Boundary, Rough and Creek fires. Additional equipment and personnel have been ordered. A small base camp will be set up at Aikens Creek Campground for the 150 personnel. A team has been ordered and their ICP will be at the Orleans district office.
- River Complex – Lower Trinity Ranger District: The River Complex fires—burning on the Six Rivers and Shasta-Trinity national forests—continue to grow and burn together. Estimated acreage burned for the five fires is 7,059 acres with 351 personnel working the fires. The fires are being managed by California Interagency IMT 3 under the command of Mark von Tillow. Their ICP is at Veterans Park, in Willow Creek.
A new infrared survey was done last night. The data shows that several fires have merged. The Onion and Happy fires have merged and are now called the Happy Fire. The Groves and Elk fires have merged and are now called the Groves Fire.
Today, in addition to scouting areas to build containment lines for the Groves Fire, firefighters will be in the area of Trinity Village planning for defense of structures, if needed. The operations in the Denny, Dailey and Hoboken areas continue.
There will be a community meeting Wednesday, August 5, at 6:00 PM, at the Trinity Village Fire Hall.
Evacuations: At the request of California Interagency Management Team 3, the Trinity County Sheriff’s Department has initiated a mandatory evacuation of the Denny, Dailey, Hoboken and Bell Flat areas, due to increased fire activity and limited resources to provide structure protection. A hard road closure is in effect on Denny Road, at the junction of Forest Road 7N26, at Onion Saddle.
- Mad River Complex – Mad River Ranger District: The four fires of the Mad River Complex have burned 13,696 acres. Containment of the complex is at 8 percent, with 783 personnel currently assigned to the incident. The ICP is at the Flying AA Guest Ranch, in Ruth. Due to numbers of fires and complexity in the area, management of the fires has been split between two fire management teams.
The Lassic Fire is of primary concern to firefighters, due to its location in wilderness, and its potential to spread toward residential communities. Crews will begin constructing contingency lines today to prevent fire from moving toward residential areas. The Gobbler Fire continues to burn down slope toward Ruth Lake. Dozer lines are in place on the south side, from which firefighters will bring fire downhill, removing fuel.
The Pickett Fire has backed down to the Mad River Road (County Road 501) in several locations. On the fire’s southeast corner, firefighters will continue to build dozer lines and hand lines to keep fire from moving toward State Highway 36 and the community of Forest Glen. A significant amount of containment line has been completed on the northeast side of the Pickett Fire.
Temperatures today over the Mad River Complex will be in the high 80s, with sunny to partly cloudy skies and relative humidity around 23 percent.
Evacuations remain in effect in the Mad River Road from Highway 36 to Three Forks Road and on the backside of the lake, on Ruth/Zenia Road to the Ruth Dam. An evacuation advisory is in effect, in the Van Duzen Road area. Road closures are in effect for Highway 36 at Route 3 west to Lower Mad River Road, Lower Mad River Road to Ruth/Zenia Road, and Ruth/Zenia Road to Three Forks Area. The Van Duzen Road (County Road 511) has been closed from Brown’s Camp to Zenia turn off due to concerns for public safety. A Large Animal Evacuation center by Trinity County is available and can be reached at (530) 623-8127.
- Route Complex – Mad River Ranger District: The seven fires of the Route Complex have burned 13,941 acres. Due to the number of fires in the area, management of the fires on the Mad River Ranger District has been split into the Mad River and the Route complexes. The Route Complex consists of the following fires: Tierney, Buck (formerly Buck and Jack fires), Johnson, Kerlin, Blake, Hitchcock and Chance fires. The Route Complex is managed by the Southern California Interagency IMT 1 with Norm Walker as the incident commander. The ICP is at the Southern Trinity High School, in Mad River.
The Route Complex has fires on both the Shasta-Trinity National Forest, near the community of Hyampom, and the Six Rivers National Forest, near the community of Mad River.
Road closures are in effect for Forest Service Route 1, approximately five miles north of Highway 36, at Forest Service Road 2N12. The Van Duzen Road is closed at Browns Canyon. Highway 36 remains closed at the Lower Mad River road on the west end, and at Route 3 on the east end.
Smoke has decreased visibility across the forest. Smoke conditions may limit visibility on local roads and highways. Motorists are urged to use caution when travelling in the forest due to the smoke hazard and the potential of firefighters working along the roadways. For air quality information see www.airnow.gov or www.ncuaqmd.org.
To date, there have been no firefighter injuries reported.