Lionshead Fire Update – Wednesday, September 16, 2020 – 9:00 a.m.
Weather and Fire Behavior: Well over one million acres are currently experiencing fire in the Pacific Northwest, mostly in large timber through the Cascades. The scale of this situation means that full perimeter containment or control will take time and help from seasonal weather. Lower temperatures, lighter winds, and higher humidity has aided firefighting efforts. Today conditions will be very similar to yesterday, with light variable winds, temperatures in the upper 60s and mid-70s, and 30 – 35% relative humidity. Fire activity should be moderated today across most of the fire and some rain is still expected Thursday.
Yesterday: Yesterday, additional fire line along the east/southeastern portion of the fire was declared contained. When fire line is called “contained,” it means control line has been established which can reasonably be expected to stop the fire’s spread. Strategic firing operations on the Warm Springs Reservation last night were very successful, helping to secure the northeastern flank of the fire. Firefighters also dealt successfully with spot fires near the base of Sisi Butte. Firefighters focused attention on protecting structures and constructing containment line.
Today’s Activities: Aviation assets will likely be grounded by smoke again today, but firefighting efforts are on a positive trajectory. Some mop-up work remains in the Stahlman neighborhood and south of Detroit Lake, and crews will be removing fire-weakened trees in Detroit for the safety of firefighters and residents. To the northeast, crews will continue to extend the containment line established over the last few days on the Warm Springs Reservation, bringing it westward towards the Mt. Hood National Forest. As weather and expected precipitation continue to mitigate fire behavior, firefighters will have more opportunities to safely “go direct,” digging fire line along the fire’s edge instead of building “indirect line” away from the fire’s perimeter. Fire managers will continue to coordinate closely with the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs and with personnel on neighboring incidents on firefighting efforts.
Later this week, Pacific Northwest Team 3 will be transferring command of the Lionshead Fire to Rocky Mountain Team 1.
Evacuations: Level 1 and 2 Evacuation Notices remain in place on the Warm Springs Reservation and can be monitored on Warm Springs Police Facebook page. Up-to-date statewide evacuation information can be found at the https://www.oregon.gov/oem/emops/Pages/RAPTOR.aspx.
Closures: Roads and trails on the southwest portion of the Warm Springs Reservation near the fires remain closed for public safety. Forest closures are in place for Deschutes, Mt. Hood and Willamette National Forests: Deschutes NF Alerts Willamette NF Alerts Mt. Hood NF Alerts
FOR ADDITIONAL FIRE INFORMATION: Fire Information: 971-277-5075
|Start Date: 8/16/2020
||Approx. Size: est. 183,744 ac.
||Resources on the Fire:
||Marion Co. Sheriff
||Total Personnel: 1113
||Linn Co. Sheriff
Pacific Northwest Team 3
14 miles west of Warm Springs
28 Water Tenders
|Jefferson Co. Sheriff
Deschutes Co. Sheriff
Slater, Devil and Fox Fire Morning Update
September 16, 2020
HAPPY CAMP, CALIFORNIA— 10 a.m. Fire behavior on the Slater Fire is anticipated to remain calm today, as it mostly did yesterday due to smoke. Most of the recent fire growth has occurred on the Devil Fire, north into Butte Fork drainage. The Slater Fire also spread towards the Devil Fire yesterday, where conditions are still somewhat drier than down canyon. Humidity levels overnight stayed relatively high, even on ridgetops, and forecasts say moisture will increase throughout the day today with a chance of rain over the fire area tomorrow or Friday.
Today, crews will continue to build direct fire line along the east side of the Pacific Crest Trail and prep along that trail to the south to protect the town of Seiad from the Devil Fire. Assigned resources there are planning to spike out there for several days to complete this task. Meanwhile, indirect fire line construction immediately around Seiad continues to be improved.
Other priorities for firefighters in the south zone of the Slater Fire today include containing the fire on the right side of the road and protecting residences in Thompson Creek and Fort Goff areas. Firefighters will today aim to complete indirect line to prevent the fire from spreading south of Highway 96 between Seiad and Happy Camp where it is burning along a bench above the road. They will also use strategic firing as needed on the east slope of the Thompson Creek drainage to bring fire down to private properties “on our terms.”
Near Gasquet, firelines are holding along Knopki Road, despite limited available resources there. Firefighters are working to scout control lines along Monkey Ridge and Oregon Mountain Road to prevent the fire’s spread into communities southwest of the fire.
In Oregon, Slater Fire growth was also minimal, with backing and flanking fire behavior. Fire resources on the ground there sought opportunities to directly contain the fire in its current footprint and establish contingency lines. No structures were lost overnight on the Slater Fire. More resources are arriving to the north zone of the Slater Fire today.
The Oregon State Fire Marshal’s Office has mobilized 10 structure task forces, six from Oregon, three from Utah, and one from Washington State. Today crews will be holding the fire along the road system on the west side of the fire near the state line. In the Takilma area, dozers will continue to put in line and work direct on the north side of the fire.
Northern Rockies Incident Management Team 2 assumed command of the northern zone of the Slater Fire (including areas around Gasquet in California) at 6 a.m. today. While many parts of fire management are divvied up between the two teams, information will still be disseminated via one Facebook page
to avoid confusion.
A new fire start discovered by aircraft on the Klamath National Forest two days ago is burning southwest of Callahan, and is now estimated at roughly 761 acres. EVACUATION ADVISORIES and ORDERS are in effect for Callahan area due to this fire – see the Siskiyou County Sheriffs Facebook page
for updated details. The Fox Fire is active on its north edge, where reports from the field say groups of trees are torching. This fire has also moved westward past Blue Jay Ridge towards Joe Keen meadows. The south zone Slater Fire is supporting suppression efforts on the Fox Fire until additional resources arrive.
Due to extreme fire danger, all National Forests in California closed September 9, and remain closed. More details on these closure orders, along with fire restrictions orders, can be found on National Forest websites and on InciWeb
Highway 199 remains closed from O’Brien south almost to Gasquet. Highway 96 is now open to one-way controlled traffic. Drivers traveling this section of highway should expect delays and use caution due to poor visibility. Other highways in Oregon are also being impacted by the smoke.
· Evacuation order/warning info and other resources for Josephine County can be found by calling Josephine County Fire Information Center 541-474-5305 (7am-10pm) or online at: