Chetco Bar Fire

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Chetco Bar Fire


16 Aug Chetco Bar Fire Daily Update
Chetco Bar Fire Daily Update August 16, 2017 9:30 a.m. Phoenix NIMO, IC Bob HousemanRogue River-Siskiyou National Forest Chetco Bar Fire Information, (541) 247-3680Current Situation: The Chetco Bar. more


Approximate Location

42.297 latitude, -123.954 longitude

Incident Overview

Chetco Bar Fire activity at 1900 on 8-16-17

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Incident Summary: The Chetco Bar Fire was reported on July 12, 2017 at approximately 1:43 p.m. The initial size-up of the fire was 1/4 acre burning in the 2002 Biscuit Fire and 1987 Silver Fire scars located in the Kalmiopsis Wilderness, roughly six air miles west of Pearsoll Peak and north of the Chetco River. Initially, a local Type 3 Incident Management Team was in charge of the fire. Phoenix National Incident Management Organization (NIMO) Team, Incident Commander Bob Houseman, assumed management of the fire July 29, 2017 at 6 a.m.

A rappel crew was dispatched and arrived on the fire the first day. Due to the extremely steep, rugged and inaccessible terrain, typical of the Kalmiopsis Wilderness, operations were limited to creating a helispot for insertion of two crews to scout the fire. The rappel crews were unable to safely engage the fire and were flown out the following day, July 13, 2017.

Because of the risk to firefighter safety, low probability of success of a direct attack strategy and minimal values at risk, fire personnel are currently focused on constructing contingency lines, conducting reconnaissance for access, scouting safe entry points, locating natural features for containment opportunities, protecting wilderness values and developing a long term plan for safely engaging the fire.

Fire managers recognize the Chetco Bar Fire will likely be a long term event. It is being managed under a suppression strategy using a mixture of direct, indirect and point protection tactics when and where there is a high probability of success. Fire personnel will engage the fire at the appropriate time and location, while keeping public and firefighter safety as our top priority.

Vegetation: The fire is primarily burning on steep slopes in the Kalmiopsis Wilderness. The area is comprised of mixed conifer and deciduous forest, brush and snags from the 2002 Biscuit Fire and 1987 Silver Fire. The fire is burning in areas of fire scar and islands that were previously unburned. The combination of down, dead fuels with a newly cured grass makes the terrain quite hazardous for firefighters. Fire behavior is moderate with isolated tree torching.

Closures: Effective immediately, the Upper Chetco Trail (#1102), from Quail Prairie Mountain to its junction with Trail 1109 at Slide Creek Camp, is closed. Additionally, the Tincup Trail (Trail #1117) and its tributary trail, Boulder Tie Trail (Trail #1117B), from its junction with the Upper Chetco Trail to where it ends along Darling Creek, is closed. Forest Service Road (FSR) 4103-087 from the beginning of the gated road west to the terminus at Chetco Pass, Trail 1117 and all of its tributary trails from its junction with Trail 1124 west to Tincup Creek, Trail 1124 and all of its tributary trails from its junction with FSR 087 northwest to its terminus at Mount Billingslea Summit and Trail 1125 and all of its tributary trails from Pearsoll Peak Trailhead north to its junction with Trail 1124. For more information and details regarding the closures, please visit the Forest’s website at

Fire Restrictions: The IFPL (Industrial Fire Precaution Level) is Level II.

Drones: While there has been no drone activity over the Chetco Bar Fire, please remember that drones interfere with firefighting efforts. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued a Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) over the Chetco Bar Fire. Any private aircraft or drone that violates the TFR could face serious criminal charges. Even without a TFR, anyone who hampers firefighting efforts could face criminal charges as well. For more information on drone use, visit the FAA's website Remember, "If you fly, we can't!"

Basic Information

Current as of
Incident TypeWildfire
Date of OriginWednesday July 12th, 2017 approx. 01:45 PM
Location6 miles west of Pearsoll Peak, north of the Chetco River; in the Kalmiopsis Wilderness.
Incident CommanderBob Houseman, Phoenix National Incident Management Organization (NIMO) Team
Incident DescriptionWildfire

Current Situation

Total Personnel72
Size6,500 Acres
Estimated Containment DateSunday October 15th, 2017 approx. 06:00 PM
Fuels Involved

The fire is burning in the fire scars of the Biscuit Fire (2002) and Silver Fire (1987) with regrowth of brush up to 5 feet tall, standing snags, and unburned islands of mixed deciduous and conifer forest. The area is steep, rugged and inaccessible terrain.

Significant Events

Active, wind driven runs, short range spotting.


Planned Actions

Crews and heavy equipment are continuing to construct and improve contingency containment lines outside of the wilderness area boundary. Determine if fire has spotted across the Chetco River-If so the incident Management Actions Points may be enacted to contain/stop large fire growth potential.

Projected Incident Activity

The Chetco River is holding the fire on its south and southwest perimeter. The fire will continue to grow at a slow rate of spread primarily to the north and west. Rolling materials on steep slopes have potential to trigger short uphill runs. Coastal inversion strength and duration will influence fire behavior.


Smoke from this fire and other fires in southwest Oregon and northern California may be visible in the area. The air quality index in communities around the fire is expected to be good to moderate.

Current Weather

Weather Concerns

Limited smoke from this incident, but scattered smoke from regional fires. Drier air mass now in place, lower Rs and north winds resulting in increased fire potential. This includes the risk of spots over the Chetco River, which is the incident's southern containment line.

Unit Information

USFS Shield
Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
3040 Biddle Rd.
Medford, OR 97504

Incident Contact

Chetco Bar Fire Information
Phone: (541)247-3680
Hours: 8 am - 7 pm

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