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Donnell Fire

Unit Information

Stanislaus National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
Sonora, CA 95370

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This incident is no longer being updated.

The Donnell Fire areaImage options: [ Full Size ]

Donnell Fire Update

This will be the last Inciweb update

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Stanislaus National Forest Type 3 IMT

Steve Schulz, Incident Commander

Matt Hilden, Incident Commander

Donnell Fire Information: 209-432-3157

Donnell Fire Email:

Donnell Fire Website:

Donnell Fire Facebook:

Fire Statistics: LOCATION: Stanislaus National Forest

DATE STARTED: August 1, 2018

ACRES: 36,450 acres







Fire Resources include: 5 Hand Crews, 2 Helicopters, 5 Engines, 4 Water Tenders

CURRENT SITUATION: The Pacific Crest Trail, Highland Lakes, Spicer Lake, and Forest Road 5N01 are open to public use. Clarification for 5N01; All spur roads heading North off the 5N01 will remain closed and all spur roads heading South off the 5N01 are open. This will be the last daily update for the Donnell Fire. Fire activity has been minimal. The Stanislaus National Forest Burned Area Emergency Rehabilitation (BAER) Team is currently working on their soil assessment regarding the burn severity for the Donnell Fire.

An upper level trough moving into the Pacific Northwest will bring breezy conditions over the higher elevations today. Relative humidities are not expected to increase over the fire area until this evening, therefore a Red Flag Warning will remain in effect through the day today, where minimum relative humidities are expected to be in the teens. Higher relative humidity and cooler temperatures will return Thursday through the end of the week as a weak trough remains along the coast.

The Stanislaus National Forest is currently working on a new closure order which clearly defines the new closure area, with the decreased size as mentioned above. Please be patient as the forest works to accomplish this.

Forest Closure Area: The forest area impacted by the fire remains closed. This includes the Highway 108 corridor, and the Clark Fork Road area. Property owners may obtain permits for access through the Summit Ranger District. Please check the Stanislaus National Forest webpage for closure order information:

OPEN: Highway 108 for through traffic only – please do not stop while we continue to work between Eagle Meadow Road (5N01) and Sonora Pass. Kennedy Meadows Resort, Relief Reservoir, Baker Campground, and Deadman Campground are open. Bull Run Lake and the trails leading to it are open. The Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) is now open to public use.

For more information about the Stanislaus National Forest, visit:

Basic Information

Current as of
Incident TypeWildfire
CauseUnknown And Under Investigation
Date of OriginWednesday August 01st, 2018 approx. 05:49 PM
LocationDonnell Lake
Incident CommanderMatt Hilden IC; Steve Schulz IC; Tony Maciel IC trainee
Coordinates38.349 latitude, -119.929 longitude

Current Situation

Total Personnel128
Size36,450 Acres
Percent of Perimeter Contained90%
Estimated Containment DateWednesday October 31st, 2018 approx. 12:00 AM
Fuels Involved

Timber (Litter and Understory) Brush (2 feet)

High elevation mixed Sierra Conifer (red/white fir, lodgepole pine) and brush (2 feet). Low fuel moistures, especially in large diameter fuels.

Significant Events





Minimal fire activity observed as the fire continues to burn in the understory where fuels remain patchy.


Planned Actions

Crews will continue with direct, indirect, confine and contain tactics and strategies with the priority remaining the northern most portion of the fire. Holding and evaluation/ validation of necessary tactics including aerial support in conjunction with ground forces will continue to be implemented in an effort to manage and ultimately mitigate and eliminate the remaining threats. The resources working on the southern portion of the fire will continue with their efforts on suppression repair and mitigation of the remaining hazards.

Projected Incident Activity

Potential exists for minimal spread to the north and east along Highlands Creek, Arnot Creek, and Disaster Creek drainage via spotting. Minimal fire spread, but spotting will remain a concern.


The Type 3 team will be transitioning with the Type 4 IC's on the local ranger districts tomorrow morning at 0800. The Calaveras Ranger District will be managing the North side of the fire from Donnell Reservoir to Disaster Creek. The South side of the fire will be managed by the Summit Ranger District. The Pacific Crest Trail, Highland Lakes, Spicer Lake, and Forest Road 5N01 will all be opened to the public tomorrow morning, Monday September 10, 2018.

Current Weather

Weather Concerns

Warmer and drier weather returns to the fire area. The conditions still exist for afternoon thunderstorms to develop, however, it will be less than previous days. Cooler weather is expected midweek over the fire area.

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