At about 8 pm last evening, a weather cell passing between the Blankenship and Wolverine Fires caused gusty outflow winds, 20-30 mph, which blew down Railroad Creek drainage and increased fire activity. This caused extensive perimeter growth on the northwestern flank of the fire in the vicinity of Holden Village. The fire is well established in Ten Mile drainage up to Hilgard Pass and in Wilson Creek, southeast of Holden. There is abundant intense and scattered heat in the western half of the fire. The main fire and burnouts have grown together and continue to move around Holden to the northwest as planned by fire management. Sprinkler systems remain in place soaking structures and vegetation in and around Holden.
On the northern end of the fire, crews in Castle Creek continued mop-up efforts yesterday assisted by water drops from helicopters after a successful burnout operation that took place several days ago. Crews in Stehekin continued improving fuel breaks throughout the Valley and will continue with similar operations today. All businesses and travel to and from Stehekin remain open.
The fire remains in a holding pattern on the southern end in Pyramid and Graham Harbor drainages. Topography and light fuels are allowing for successful helicopter water drops to slow the fire’s progression. Efforts to reopen old containment lines are near complete on Shady Pass Road (Forest Road 5900) from Crow Hill to the Lake Chelan. It will serve as a contingency line if the fire should move south. The southernmost edge of the fire remains 12 miles uplake from 25-Mile Creek and 30 miles from Chelan. Crews today will continue to improve the Shady Pass contingency line and reduce ladder fuels.
Expected Fire Behavior: Fire behavior is expected to be minimal on the northern and southern edges of the fire. Officials expect continued fire growth west up Railroad Creek toward Holden where fuels are continuous. Fuel moistures are very low and will continue to dry out. Pockets of hidden heat may become active throughout the day and spotting potential remains high. Visible smoke is likely as fuels are consumed.
Blankenship Fire: Minimal fire behavior was observed on the Blankenship Fire yesterday with fire creeping and smoldering downslope toward Agnes Creek. The Carson Hotshots will be inserted to evaluate line construction and equipment needs if conditions allow on the east side of the fire. Fire spread in other directions is limited by avalanche chutes and geologic features. The terrain is very steep and rugged and firefighter safety is our number one priority.
Goode Fire: Firefighters continued to secure handline on the southern flank of the Goode Fire yesterday. The north, east, and west sides have been tied into rocky ridgetops and a glacier. Fire behavior will be similar to yesterday with minimal growth and consumption of interior materials. Crews will continue to work the southern flank with helicopter support and begin mop-up efforts in Park Creek. This fire will be transferred back to the National Park Service at 6 am on Wednesday.
Weather: Weather will continue to be warm and dry with valley temperatures reaching 90-95 degrees and ridge temperatures 70-75 degrees. Expect to see increasing cloud cover in the afternoon and a slight chance of thunderstorms with gusty outflow winds.
Closure Information: Shady Pass Road (5900) remains closed due to heavy fire equipment traffic. The closure begins at the junction with Slide Ridge Road (8410) and continues over Shady Pass to the Entiat River Road. Slide Ridge Road and Snowberry Campground are open. The Big Hill Road is closed from Shady Pass to the Big Hill Trailhead. Domke Lake, Lucerne and Refrigerator Harbor campgrounds are closed until further notice.
QUICK FACTS - INCIDENT SUMMARY
Approximate acreages: Wolverine Fire - 34,500 acres; Blankenship - 170 acres; Goode Fire - 609 acres
Fire Containment: 20%
Resources on the Fire: Crews - 13; Engines - 19; Water Tenders -10; Bulldozers - 4; Helicopters - 8
Total Personnel: 579
Structures lost: 1 residence and 3 minor structures
Jurisdiction: USDA-Forest Service; National Park Service; Washington State DNR; Chelan County Sheriff; Chelan County Fire Districts #7 and #10
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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, visit Okanogan_Wenatchee National Forest: http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/okawen/alerts-notices