Hwy 20 Still Closed After Pawnee Fire Acts Up; New County Fire in Yolo Grows 16,500 Acres Overnight

Satellite Imagery captured by the National Weather Service in Sacramento shows the bright lights from the Pawnee and County Fires

Satellite Imagery captured by the National Weather Service in Sacramento shows the bright lights from the Pawnee and County Fires.

High temperatures, dry conditions, and wind fueled two fires in Lake and Yolo County last night.

SR 20 is still closed from the junction of SR 53 in Lake County to SR 16 in Colusa County. Caltrans will update as soon as the highway reopens. This photo was taken just before midnight showing the fire burning near the highway.

SR 20 is still closed from the junction of SR 53 in Lake County to SR 16 in Colusa County. Caltrans will update as soon as the highway reopens. This photo was taken just before midnight showing the fire burning near the highway. [Photo from Caltrans District 1]

The Pawnee Fire, which had started June 23, had almost reached 75% containment when yesterday it burst from the mountains where firefighters had been trying to corral it and galloped down towards State Route 20 closing the road and forcing new evacuations.

Today, Cal Fire reports it has grown to 14,150 acres and new evacuations are in place. (See here for more details.)

“An immediate threat exists to the community of Double Eagle and major fiber optic lines serving Ukiah and Cortina as well as associated powerline [infrastructure],” reports the Northern California Geographic Coordination Center. “Evacuations are currently in progress for the community of Double Eagle. There is an evacuation advisory for the areas South of Highway 20.”

A Red Flag warning is in place through this weekend, meaning that conditions are ideal for wildfire spread.

Gusty winds from the north are expected this morning but might switch to the southwest later today. Temperatures should be in the high nineties today but there will be slightly higher humidity. Monday should be cooler though.

Over 2200 personnel are on scene in an attempt to stop its spread.

The Red Flag warning is also in place for the relatively nearby County Fire which blew up yesterday afternoon in Yolo County by Hwy 16. The explosive fire blasted through approximately 16,500 acres after it was reported at 2:12 p.m. It also has evacuations and road closures. (See here for more details.)

“Dangerous rate of spread and long range spotting observed,” reports the Northern California Geographic Coordination Center. “Structures are threatened with mandatory evacuation orders in effect west of Hwy 16, between County Rd 63-78.”

MAPS: Click the photos for large pdf versions or zoom for detail.

Pawnee Fire: Pawnee FIre Map July 1, 2018

County Fire: 

 

Earlier ChapterCounty Fire Now 8000 Acres!] Hwy 20 Closed; Second Wildfire Takes off in Yolo County; Civilians Reported Trapped

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9 comments

  • I look at that area of the fire up north that looks like it is going to surround an unburned portion and think how awful it would be to be caught there. May everyone, professional and civilian,human and animal be safe.

  • Grab as many beloved belongings as possible and get the hell out! Scary stuff. Prayers go out to all affected.

  • The fire monster is at it again. Please everyone be safe. Nothing is worth your life.

  • I hope everyone down there is checking on there elderly and helping them get out, so there is no loss of life. Don’t wait until ya to late!

  • CLAUDIA Johnson

    It is so early for fires this large Grow over night Please everyone be carefully over 4 of July It could be a very bad fire season

  • What (who?) Is starting these fires?

  • Yesterday was the anniversary of the 19 Granite Mountain hotshots who were killed during the Yarnell fire in Arizona, 2013.

    If you can handle a tearjerker, “Only The Brave” is a great movie about them and their story.

    Good luck Firefighters, stay safe.

  • Ernie Branscomb

    Kym
    We are on the fire crew a the Kate Wolf Festival in Laytonville. Many people are from from Napa, lake and Yolo. As expected they are very concerned and out of touch. I have been referring them to your site.

    Needless to say they are grateful to have ONE place to get good information.

    There was a fire that took out one acre 1/4 mile south of the festival Saturday morning. Chief George Monroe was on-scene early in the fire. There was a massive “red flag day” attack by Cal Fire and local departments. The fire was out within an hour.
    Thanks again
    Ernie

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