Indian Creek Fire Update for August 14, 2017
Monday, August 14, 2017 9:00 a.m. Location: Approximately 20 miles west-southwest of Hood River, Oregon in the Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness on the Hood River Ranger District of the Mt. Hood National. more
The Indian Creek Fire started on July 4 near 7 1/2 Mile Camp by Eagle Creek Trail #440, in the Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness on the Mt. Hood National Forest. Firefighters hiked into the area by way of Eagle Creek Trail, and found that the fire was burning west of Eagle Creek in deep duff on steep slopes covered by loose rock. It was determined to be unsafe for firefighters to work directly on the fire.
Water drops from helicopters have been used since July 4 to cool the fire and reduce the rate of spread. The water drops, sometimes over 100,000 gallons in a day, have raised the humidity and fuel moisture in the fire area. An infrared detection flight early on August 16 showed two interior hot areas. The fire is still 83 acres in size.
On July 28, a National Incident Management Organization (NIMO) Team assumed control of the Indian Creek Fire, led by Incident Commander Mike Quesinberry. On August 16 the NIMO Team transitioned to a Type 3 organization, led by Incident Commander Casey Boespflug. The Type 3 organization will continue to work on the fire.
Crews assigned to the fire have been observing the fire and conducting reconnaissance for areas where fireline can safely and effectively be constructed. They are also collecting weather observations to help predict the fire behavior and smoke movement. Along roads designated as potential control lines, the crews are cutting brush and other low vegetation.
Because of the difficult terrain and limited control options, this fire is expected to burn for a long period of time before it is controlled. Sometimes the fire is producing smoke that affects nearby communities and Interstate 84 near Cascade Locks.
On July 28, the Mt. Hood National Forest and Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area jointly issued a trail and area closure for the area surrounding the fire. The closure includes Eagle Creek Trail #440 from the boundary with the Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness (to the north) to its terminus at the junction with the Pacific Crest Trail. Also closed are the adjacent trails Eagle Benson #434, Indian Springs Trail #432, Eagle Tanner Trail #433, Chinidere Cutoff Trail #406M, and Tanner Butte Trail #401. Forest Service Road 1310 is closed east of the junctions with the 1311 to its terminus at Wahtum Lake.
Wahtum Lake and Indian Springs Campgrounds are closed. Camping is not allowed at Wahtum Lake or elsewhere within the closure area. Indian Springs is open as a water source for PCT hikers. Eagle Creek Trail is open for 4.8 miles from the trailhead near I-84 to the Wilderness boundary. The Pacific Crest Trail, Punch Bowl Falls and High Bridge remain open; however Tunnel Falls is closed.
|Current as of|
|Date of Origin||Tuesday July 04th, 2017 approx. 05:36 PM|
|Location||Eagle Creek Trail System|
|Incident Commander||Casey Boespflug, Incident Commander|
|Incident Description||The Fire Is Burning In A Steep Canyon With 75% Slopes, With At Least 8 Inches Of Timber Litter And Duff On Top Of Loose Rock. Unsafe For Firefighters To Take Direct Action.|
|Percent of Perimeter Contained||10%|
|Estimated Containment Date||Saturday September 30th, 2017 approx. 12:00 PM|
Timber (litter & understory)
Bucket drops will be used as needed to check fire spread. Current weather is minimizing fire activity. We continue to identify control opportunities and contingencies for future actions if fire activity increases and the fire begins to encroach on the Management Action Points. The T2IA crew is back and will be doing some work to improve contingency lines.
|Projected Incident Activity|
If thermal trough sustains and convection develops fire could grow 300 acres.
Area and trail closures in place.