[UPDATE 5:10 p.m.] New Evacuation Warnings]The Klamathon Fire: ‘Expect Extreme Fire Behavior’ Today
According to Cal Fire, expect extreme fire behavior today with the fire moving in multiple directions. They warn,
Approximately 350 homes are immediately threatened in the communities of Hornbrook, Hilt, Colestin and Irongate Reservoir, and approximately 750 people have been evacuated.
Natural and cultural resources are threatened on the Klamath National Forest and the Rouge River-Siskiyou National Forest. Threatened and endangered species habitat are threatened on the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument and Soda Mountain Wilderness. CAL FIRE Black Mountain Repeater and Verizon cellular towers on Horn Peak are currently threatened. Interstate 5 was reopened on 7/6/18 but remains threatened. Private timber land on the west side of the incident is currently threatened. The Yreka Western Railroad is currently threatened.
Firefighters are getting a shaky grip on the southeast section of the blaze. But the northeast section running into Oregon could grow quickly with help from predicted winds.
Because rainfall was only 50% of normal in the area this last year, vegetation, the fuel for the fire, is drier than would be normal also meaning it catches fire easier. The day length is about 15 hours at this time of year which means that the temperature stays high longer and humidity is low for longer.
With weather forecast to be warm and dry, firefighters will face a struggle to get hold of this beast.
#KlamathonFire [update] off Klamathon Road and Copco Road, south of Hornbrook (Siskiyou County) is now 21,803 acres and 5% contained. Evacuations in effect. Unified Command: @CALFIRESKU, @SiskiyouSheriff, @ORDeptForestry https://t.co/MNW31CJqMV pic.twitter.com/3uIg3r6f9H
— CAL FIRE (@CAL_FIRE) July 7, 2018
The Klamathon Fire is also now setting fire to the plans of hikers. The famous Pacific Crest Trail has closed the “from the I-5 crossing (~mile 1719) in Southern Oregon, north to Soda Mountain Road (mile 1731.4),” according to a tweet by the Pacific Crest Trail Association.
The Klamath Hotshots, whose motto is “Work Hard, Have Fun…A season of sacrifice for a lifetime of tradition” will be headed home today. These skilled handcrews have been cutting lines on the huge County Fire near Lake Berryessa. The superintendent, both captains, and one senior firefighter all live in the Hornbrook area and were fighting one fire while their homes were near the front lines of another. They are now scheduled for two days of mandatory rest, but are expected to be joining the fight against the growing #KlamathonFire soon.
See a map of the fire below. For more information on evacuations, shelters, and road closures, click here.
MAP:UPDATE 1:24 p.m.: BLM lands southeast of Ashland are now closed due to the Klamathon Fire.
Effective Immediately: BLM Lands SE of Ashland Closed to Protect Public Health and Safety
— ODF Southwest (@swofire) July 7, 2018
UPDATE 5:10 p.m.: Cal Fire is announcing new evacuations:
- 1000+ Acre Closes I-5; Multiple Structures Reported Burned
- Governor Brown Declares State of Emergency for Siskiyou Due to Klamathon Fire
- Klamathon Fire Burns Multiple Structures; CHP Escorting Drivers on I-5
- Klamathon Fire Pushing North to the Oregon Border; More Evacuations; One Dead