Wildfire Update: Increased Acres, but Increased Containment

The Alder Fire is now up to 55% containment as it slowly increased in size over the weekend. The Mountaineer Fire still does not have any containment and increased slightly in size. More details are from InciWeb below.

MOUNTAINEER FIRE

Location: About ½ mile north of Summit Trailhead, in the Golden Trout Wilderness.

Acres Burned: Approximately 375 acres

Fire Discovered: October 13

Cause: Lightning

Containment: 0%

Resources: 70 total personnel: 3 Crews and 2 engines

Summary: The Mountaineer Fire is burning about a ½ mile north of the Summit Trailhead, on the north side of South Mountaineer Creek, in the Golden Trout Wilderness, on the Western Divide Ranger District. The Mountaineer Fire is about 1.5 miles east of the Alder Fire. Aerial reconnaissance flights continue to monitor the fire daily. The fire is in a remote area dangerous to access on foot due to a large number of dead standing trees. A confine and contain suppression strategy is being used to suppress this fire. Characteristic: The fire exhibited moderate fire behavior, slowly backing downhill. The fire will continue to move toward the Summit Trailhead, and toward South Mountaineer Creek. Crews have reopened and improved trails and previous fire lines to the south and west of the fire, to use them for fire lines. The hand firing operation continued along the Summit Trail yesterday. Today, hand firing is planned from the Summit Trailhead toward the burn scar from the Soda Fire. The purpose of the firing operation is to reduce the fuel load, keep the fire within the containment area, and solidify containment sooner. Aerial ignition was used yesterday on the south side of the Mountaineer Fire, and it will resume today. Local residents may see a temporary increase in smoke coming from the fire area due to the firing operation.

Closures: An area closure around the Alder and Mountaineer fires on the Western Divide Ranger District went into effect October 20.

ALDER FIRE

Location: Five miles north of Camp Nelson by North Alder Creek

Acres Burned: Approximately 1,605 acres

Fire Discovered: October 4

Cause: Lightning

Containment: 55% contained

Resources: 99 total personnel2 hand crews, 5 engines, and 1 helicopter

Summary: The Alder Fire, located on the Western Divide Ranger District, is burning north of North Alder Creek in dense timber with extensive tree mortality, many dead snags and heavy fuels on the ground. The extensive number of dead trees creates a serious safety concern for firefighters. Given these conditions, a confine and contain suppression strategy is being used to manage the fire.

Characteristic: Aerial reconnaissance flights continue to monitor the fire each day. The fire remains contained to the south, by North Alder Creek. The western perimeter of the Alder Fire has not crossed the Middle Fork of the Tule River. The Northwest flank of the fire has backed down into the Burro Creek drainage, and rock outcrops have slowed the progression northward. It has not progressed to the east. The fire remains confined to the ground, slowly creeping and smoldering among dead trees stressed by drought and killed by insects, cleaning up dead fuel on the ground in its path. Minimal growth in the perimeter is expected.

Firefighters continue to monitor the southwest corner of the Alder Fire in the vicinity of the small slop overs that occurred in the past several days. Suppression repair of contingency fire lines near Mountain Home State Forest on the west side of the Alder Fire is complete. Crews are finishing suppression repair of hand fire lines in the area of Sequoia Crest today. Suppression repair of fire lines is done largely to mitigate the potential for erosion. The excavator has finished suppression repair of secondary dozer lines on the west side of the fire. Two engines are working night shift to monitor the fire through the night near the Doyle Springs and Sequoia Crest communities, and also monitor the area around the Summit Trailhead on the Mountaineer Fire.

MOSES FIRE

Location: One mile south of Moses Mountain

Acres Burned: 0.3 acres

Fire Discovered: October 17

Cause: Lightning

Summary:The Moses Fire was discovered during an October 17 Alder Fire reconnaissance flight. The fire is located 1 mile south of Moses Mountain, west of the Upper Tule Grove, at the head of Pine Creek on the Western Divide Ranger District. Characteristic: The fire is exhibiting minimal fire behavior. The aerial reconnaissance flight found very little visible smoke from the Moses Fire. WEATHER OUTLOOK An area of high pressure aloft over the Eastern Pacific Ocean will be responsible for dry weather, light terrain driven winds, and above normal high temperatures in the early part of the week.

SMOKE OUTLOOK

Smoke is expected to stay at higher elevations. Smoke production will decrease in quantity over the next few days. The smoke outlook for the fire area can be viewed at https://wildlandfiresmoke.net/outlooks/SouthernSierra-Sequoia. Information about air quality and what you can do to reduce the effects of smoke can be found at the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District’s website http://www.valleyair.org/aqinfo/wildfires.htm.

U.S. Forest Service, Sequoia National Forest and Giant Sequoia National Monument Voice: 559-784-1500

Webwww.fs.usda.gov/sequoiaFacebook:@SequoiaNF Twitter: @sequoiaforest OnCell App: Sequoia National Forest

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