[UPDATE 9:33 p.m.] Day 11 Lightning Fires


South Complex Castle Fire Southeast area [Photo from InciWeb]

Eleven days after lightning struck the Emerald counties, massive fires burn through much of the area. Below is our quick overview of what is still burning. As we update each incident throughout the day, we’ll note the time the facts were posted so you can quickly see if there is something new on these incidents. (Newest maps of the fires here)Smoke seen from Highway 36

Smoke seen from Highway 36 [Photo from InciWeb]

Smoke seen from Highway 36 [Photo from InciWeb]

  • Fork Complex (Trinty Pines and north to Hayfork):(Current as of 9 p.m.) 19,841 acres burned and 19% contained.
    “Local Red Flag Warning starting Monday.” (More info here)
  • Gasquet Fire: (Current as of 8:15 p.m.) 2162 acres burned and 5% containment. “Red Flag posted for the next 24 to 36 hours. Gusty winds and borderline RH could present problems with increased activity in inaccessible areas.” (More info here)
  • Humboldt Complex (Alderpoint and surroundings):(Current as of 7:53 p.m.) 4,665 acres burned and 50% contained. Structures Destroyed:  6 outbuildings. Firefighter injuries to date: 11 Total Personnel: 1,701. “Fire growth is not anticipated on the Blocksburg , Bluford, Dobbyn, Steelhead, Wildcat or Winchester Fires.” (More info here)
  • (New fire) Jerusalem Fire (Lake County): (Current as of 7:40 p.m.) 3000 acres burned and 0% containment. ‘The fire is currently moving northeast in dense brush and steep terrain. Resources are being sent from the Rocky Fire to the Jerusalem Fire. “The Middletown High School evacuation center will remain open.”
    (More info here.) Telephone number (707) 967-4208
  • Mad River Complex (Ruth Lake and Surroundings):(Current as of 6:30 p.m.) 18,317 acres burned and 35% contained. “Gusty west winds around 15 mph will shift south overnight mainly affecting the higher elevations in the fire area and may result in alignment allowing for increased fire behavior.” (More info here) Telephone number for the public information officer is 707-574-6289.

    River Complex Fire near Lone Pine repeater afternoon of August 7 [Photo from InciWeb]

  • River Complex:(Current as of 8:10 p.m.) 15,879 burned and 12% contained. “A Red Flag Warning will be in effect from 11:00 AM Monday to 5:00 PM Tuesday for gusty winds and marginally low humidity in the Six-Rivers National Forest and the Hoopa Indian Reservation. A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now or will shortly. ” (More info here.) Telephone number for the public information officer 530-276-8559.
  • Rocky Fire (Lake County): (Current as of 6:10 p.m.) 69,636 acres burned and 85% contained, 43 residences, 53 outbuildings destroyed; 8 structures damaged.  “Firefighters are being released as containment grows, allowing them to be reassigned and available for other fires throughout the state.” (More info here)  Telephone number for the public information officer is (707) 967-4207.
  • Route Complex (south and west of Hyampom and Buck Mt. area):(Current as of 7:22 p.m.) 19,874 acres burned and 15% contained. “A fire weather watch has been issued for our area tomorrow because of the potential for high winds. A low-pressure system is expected to arrive over the next 72 hours. The system will bring lower temperatures and higher humidity, with an increase in wind speeds (20-25 mph on the ridge tops). Temperatures forecasted in the upper 70’s and 34% relative humidity.”(More info here.) Telephone number for the public information officer is 707-574-6865.
  • South Complex (north and west of Hyampom):(Current as of 8:30 p.m.) 17,389 acres burned and 5% containment. “A public meeting will be held Monday, August 10, 2015 at 6pm at the Burnt Ranch School. A public CAMP TOUR will be held at the Hyampom Airport Incident Command Post at 11am on Monday, August 10, 2015. Please call 530/628-0093 and let us know you’re coming!” (More info here)

Here’s our tools to keep you abreast of what’s happening:

Newest Info: Next, the twitter feed near the bottom right of our home page is continuously updated with the latest tweets from Cal Fire, other local news organizations, weather, etc.

Above that are two scanner feeds–one that will take you to Eureka/north coverage. The other that will take you to Eureka/south coverage.

Past Info: Reminder, at the bottom of this post under Earlier Chapters are links to our previous coverage. Much of it still very relevant. Particularly note our newest fire maps. We’ll be updating them throughout the day.

Don’t miss a post: In our right hand column is a subscribe box (for those accessing on mobiles, scroll down to the bottom and the box is just above recent posts.) Fill that out and a link to every story will appear in your email.

And, if you want a reminder of what this is all about, go see the incredible and short video of the Pine Fire raging as Miranda VFD laid hose. [Click here to view.]

UPDATE 3:30 p.m.: Cal Fire says, new firing operation on Pine Mountain in the Humboldt Complex. Expect more smoke.

UPDATE 6:00 p.m.: Evacuation as of August 9. Click here to see more.

UPDATE 6:10 p.m.: New fire in Lake County. Reports of evacuations.

UPDATE 6:15 p.m.:



UPDATE 7:25 p.m.:



UPDATE 8:16 p.m.:

UPDATE 8:20 p.m.:

UPDATE 9:32 p.m.: Fire activity increased in the fires located in the National Forests.

Earlier Chapters:



  • Unbelievable or believable photos we will never forget the 10th day The 10th day

  • Kym, I’ve heard repeatedly that our volunteer firefighters are not being compensated or supported by CALFIRE; that they’re not being provided with food, water, or basic environmental protection (e.g., poison oak protection) or basic toiletries. Can you confirm this, or clarify? Doesn’t CALFIRE have contractual support agreements with our VFDs? Are they fulfilling their obligations to local fire companies? This would be a great sidebar. Thanks for providing fact on this question!

  • I think there is a typo here on the size of the River Complex- 135K acres or 15K acres?

  • Typo on the River Complex fire – I about spit out my coffee when I read 135k acres! From InciWeb – “The River Complex is now at 15,879 acres with 8% containment.” And thanks for all the great updates Kym!

  • Remove the 3 from the river complex! It is at almost 16,000 acres. The groves and happy fires have merged. They were going to fly the fires again last night for updated maps. I have yet to see the maps! I am sure the best ones will be posted here when avail.! Thanks

  • great coverage! One small error: River Complex stands at 15,879 acres not 135,879 acres.

  • In a Quiet Panic

    is the acreage burned in the river complex correct?? 135k?

  • Some of the photos are sad to look at,but at the same time their amazing.Sad thing is are fire season has only just started!!scary to think about after this start.Im hoping everyone is safe,Thank you again to all our firefighters god bless

    • Yes and if el nino does form this winter we are gonna have massive mudslides everywhere! All that silt into the rivers is the true problem in river health, the eel near redway will often look dry on top (which screws the fish obviously) while the water is actually just running underground thru the silt. Think about it, the Eel used to have boats from the ocean come up river. The river was soooooo deep then, some pics are up at benbow inn of these huge ships. Do the agencies have any advice for landowners on how to stabilize slopes for this winter storm season? Planting redwoods helps as they stabilize the soil on steep slopes but take a few years to really get their roots linked up underground.

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