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Natchez Fire

Unit Information

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

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Incident Contacts

Natchez Fire Information
Email: 2018.NatchezFire@firenet.gov
Phone: 530-493-1524
Hours: 7:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Joint Information Center
Email: swofireinfo@gmail.com
Phone: 541-474-5305
Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 8: p.m.

Highlighted Activity

08/20/2018 8/20 Natchez Fire Update
8/20 Natchez Fire UpdateCommunity Meeting: There will be a Fire Information meeting at 6:00pm Tuesday evening, August 21, 2018 at the Grange in Happy Camp, CA. Weather: It will be partly...
News - 08/20/2018
August 21 Community Meeting in Happy Camp, CAImage options: [ Full Size ]

Monday August 20, 2018 - The 20,275-acre Natchez Fire was started by lightning on July 15, 2018. The fire is located just south of the Oregon/California border between Happy Camp, CA and Cave Junction, OR. The 697 personnel assigned to the incident are working to implement suppression actions that will most effectively and safely limit fire growth.


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The community of Sunstar has been placed in a Level 1 evacuation "Ready" status. Del Norte County, CA, including the community of Sunstar, has adopted the Oregon three level evacuation process. For Del Norte County emergency notification information, visit: http://www.co.del-norte.ca.us/departments/administration/emergency-services.

Effective 2:30 pm August 1, Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office issued an evacuation order for the two residences near the terminus of the South Fork Road (National Forest System Road 17 N 32). The residents received a warning on July 31 and chose to evacuate.

In the evening on August 12, Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office upgraded one additional residence in the South Fork of Indian Creek from an evacuation warning to an evacuation order.

Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office has also issued an evacuation warning for all residences accessed by the South Fork Road (Road 17N32) and all residences accessed by the Grayback road north of the junction of the South Fork Road (Road 17 N 32) and the Grayback Road.

On the evening of August 12, the evacuation warning area was expanded to include all residences on or accessed from the Indian Creek/Grayback Road from the intersection with Doolittle Creek, north to West Branch Campground.

The warnings are being issued as a precautionary measure. Those that are in the warning area are reminded to remain vigilant in the possible event that the evacuation warning is upgraded to a evacuation order.

Fire area closures are in place on the Rogue River-Siskiyou and Klamath National Forests.

Forest Road 48, known locally as the Grayback Road, between Happy Camp and Cave Junction, remains open.

Basic Information

Current as of
Incident TypeWildfire
CauseLightning
Date of OriginSunday July 15th, 2018 approx. 06:30 PM
Location8 miles northwest of Happy Camp, CA
Incident CommanderMike Goicoechia, Northern Rockies IMT Team 1
Coordinates41.956 latitude, -123.551 longitude

Current Situation

Total Personnel721
Size20,275 Acres
Percent of Perimeter Contained70%
Estimated Containment DateMonday October 15th, 2018 approx. 12:00 AM
Fuels Involved

Timber (Litter and Understory)

Timber (Grass and Brush) Brush (2 feet)

Significant Events

Active, backing, creeping, torching. With a strong smoke inversion, fire activity will primarily be low intensity backing and or creeping.

Moderate surface fire with occasional single tree and group tree torching in areas of receptive brush, heavy fuels or smoke clearing.

Outlook

Planned Actions

Continued low intensity burn operations in Division I and G to deepen and strengthen the primary line followed by holding and mop-up operations. Continue to identify other direct and indirect line opportunities to address fire perimeter on the west side of the fire, primarily from the wilderness boundary south. Hold and mop up north end of fire in Divisions J, L, S, A, and F. Structure Group continues to assess structures in Indian Creek and create a structure protection plan and contingency plans.

Projected Incident Activity

12 Hours: Continued thermal belt conditions and NE winds mixing in dry air are keeping fire behavior moderately active until after sunset. The smoke inversion will minimize spread.

24 Hours: Poor humidity recovery at night combined with hot dry weather will extend the burn period from mid-morning to after sunset above the smoke inversion. Low to moderate surface fire spread is expected as long as the inversion is settled in, but some lifting is possible this burn period and fire behavior will become moderate to active in areas of smoke clearing. Continue moderate spread of the main fire to the south towards Baldy Mountain, east towards the containment line and west further into the Siskiyou Wilderness. Fire spread is expected to back down into the Copper Creek drainage.

48 hours: Continued poor nighttime humidity recovery and thermal belt. Low to moderate surface fire spread is expected as long as the inversion is settled in, but some lifting is possible this burn period and fire behavior will become moderate to active in areas of smoke clearing. Continue moderate spread of the main fire to the south towards Baldy Mountain, east towards the containment line and west further into the Siskiyou Wilderness. Fire spread is expected to continue down the Copper Creek drainage.

72 hours: Same as 48 hours. Fuels continue to dry out, some to historical lows, and the fire will remain slope and fuels-driven

Anticipated after 72 hours:

Activity will remain moderate as long as the smoke inversion remains. Continued fire spread being primarily slope and fuels-driven surface fire with occasional single and group torching.

Remarks

16 Australian firefighting personnel are supporting the Natchez Fire in leadership positions.

Warm Springs IHC and Silver City IHC crews are providing surge support to complete critical objectives on the incident.

Current Weather

Weather Concerns

Forecasted Weather for Sunday:

Sky/Wx: Sunny. Hot and dry. Areas of variable smoke.

Winds: Northwest 3 to 7 mph with gusts up to 10 mph on ridgetops. Elsewhere, terrain-driven winds 0-4 mph.

Max Temp: 82F to 92F.

Min RH: 15%.

The ridge of high pressure over the area will move on to the east Sunday. Smoke will continue to impact the fire area. Southwest to northwest and terrain-driven winds will prevail across the fire during the afternoon with winds continuing to shift northeasterly along ridges overnight. With a thermal belt in place, relative humidity will have poor recovery overnight in mid-slopes and

higher. Nighttime inversions and smoke will keep valley bottom areas with good humidity recovery.