Wildfire Update: Fires Continue to Smolder

Amazing on how dry it is in the mountains. The three wildfires continue to smolder even after the Thanksgiving rain/snow. Sounds like the old Soda Fire from a few years ago. Anyway, we shall see what happens after these current storms move through. Here is the latest.

SEQUOIA NATIONAL FOREST, Calif. – Three wildfires, ignited by lightning in early October, continue to smolder in the Western Divide Ranger District, Sequoia National Forest. Observed during an aerial reconnaissance Sunday were burning snags and stumps well within the fire perimeters. “It appears precipitation received in recent storms wasn’t enough to extinguish the fires, however light rain and a dusting of snow in the higher elevations reduces the threat considerably,” stated District Ranger Eric LaPrice.

Another storm is expected over the District Wednesday through Friday. With additional precipitation, the fires will likely be fully extinguished. Fire officials continue to monitor the fires by air and on the ground, weather permitting. Two Forest Service hand crews, helicopters, and overhead personnel are assigned.

The Alder, Mountaineer, and Moses Wildfires, burned in dense timber stands with extensive tree mortality and heavy fuel loading on the ground. “A confine-contain suppression strategy was used by Fire Management personnel” stated LaPrice.  “I made the decision to use this strategy on all three fires to reduce the risks to firefighters from standing dead trees and steep, rugged terrain.”

Additional information, with maps and photos can be found on https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6238/

Tulare County Fire Department and CAL FIRE have been supporting agencies assisting the Forest Service with fire containment efforts.

Alder Wildfire – Smoke can be seen from smoldering downed logs, snags, and stump holes on the Alder Wildfire.

Mountaineer Wildfire – There was a light dusting of snow over most of the Mountaineer Wildfire, however smoke can still be seen. 

Moses Wildfire – The Moses Wildfire burned in this secluded stand of timber near the top of a rocky ridgetop. Even at a higher elevation, this lightning-caused wildfire burned on its own through nineteen acres before mostly being extinguished by recent storms.

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