The Cub Creek 2 Fire started on July 16, 2021, at 1:27 PM. It's located 5 miles north of Winthrop, Washington on lands managed by Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, State of Washington and Okanogan Fire District 6. It was initially estimated at 2000 acres and observed actively running, spotting, and torching in grass, brush and timber. Cedar Creek firefighting resources were diverted to assist with initial attack. By 7 pm that evening, a type 3 organization, staffed by many members of Northwest Team 8 from the nearby Cedar Creek Fire, was in charge, 50 residences were threatened, and evacuations and road closures were in effect. A Red Cross shelter was set up and the Washington State structure strike team was reassigned to protect properties. By July 17th, 271 single residences were threatened and one outbuilding was confirmed destroyed and road, trail and area closures were in effect. On July 30, 2021 at 6:00 p.m. the Southwest Area Incident Management Team (IMT) 2 transitioned with California IMT 1. Cooperators include Washington DNR, Okanogan County Fire District #6, Okanogan County, Washington State Patrol, Washington Dept. of Transportation, OCEC, City of Winthrop, City of Twisp, Washington State Parks.
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Resources for additional information:
Fire Information Line – (406) 426-9595 (8:00 am to 8:00 pm)
Inciweb Page: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/7675/
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/CubCreek2Fire2021
Smoke Blog: https://wasmoke.blogspot.com/
Highway Information: https://www.wsdot.com/traffic/trafficalerts/default.aspx
Methow Conservancy (Wildfire Preparedness): https://methowconservancy.org/discover/fire-prep-recovery%20
Wildfire Ready Neighbors (House Assessments): https://wildfireready.dnr.wa.gov/
|Current as of|
|Date of Origin||Friday July 16th, 2021 approx. 01:30 PM|
|Location||5 miles north of Winthrop, WA|
|Incident Commander||Dave Bales|
|Coordinates||48.551 latitude, -120.194 longitude|
|Percent of Perimeter Contained||24%|
|Estimated Containment Date||Tuesday August 31st, 2021 approx. 12:00 AM|
The fire has primarily been carried by long-needle ponderosa pine litter, shrubs, and dead/downed fuels in short-needle conifer areas.
GR2 - partially cured bunchgrasses, pine grass, sedges
GS2 - bunch/wheatgrass, ceanothus, Cascade azalea, bitterbrush, bearberry
TL5 - compacted short-needle and long-needle litter with associated dead/downed fuels
Fire was slow to recover momentum and activity after the previous day's precipitation and consistent elevated humidity. Fire actively smoldered and crept overnight where protected by closed canopies and slowly began active movement in the mid-afternoon after smoke cleared and humidity dropped, but overall, fire activity was limited this burn period.
Branch 6: Continue to open interior roads and mitigate hazard trees within the fire perimeter and assess the fire edge along the Cub Creek drainage. Ignition operations may be considered around the Brevicomis structures to secure control lines that are in place and reduce the risk to the structures.
Branch 8: Continue with prep of Forest Road 37 and FR39 in anticipation of easterly growth within the Inventoried Roadless Areas and past fire footprints. Scout for potential control line locations and identify roads and ridge systems in Bear Creek, South Beaver Creek and West Fork Salmon Creek. Other road systems will also be considered and scouted. Mop up of past firing operations to secure control lines.
|Projected Incident Activity|
12 hours: (Mon night) Smoke is the main issue, but humidity recovery will be worsening with overnight humidity only rising to 45 to 55 percent. Pockets of consolidated dead/downed materials will continue to be the origin point of surface fire spread as the fire area remained under heavy smoke throughout much of the day. Flanking and creeping fire through needlecast and small diameter dead/downed materials will slowly accelerate as humidity levels reached their minimum daily value after 1700 and will allow continue fire spread likely until the early morning after midnight.
(Tue) A Heat Advisory is in effect from Tuesday through Wednesday evening. Temperatures will rise at lower elevations into the middle 90s. Humidity recovery will be poor overnight and afternoon humidity going below 20 percent in most locations. Gusts to the low 20 mph range. Drying out of surface fuels will continue today with an increase in fire activity in the afternoon as surrounding fuels become more available for combustion. Small-scale localized fire growth expansion is likely, specifically in areas containing large amounts of dead/downed and moderately closed canopies and where available fuels are situated on slopes. (Tue night and Wed) Poor humidity recovery with warm overnight lows. A Heat Advisory continues on Wednesday. Temperatures will continue to rise into the lower to middle 90s, with humidity lowering below the 20 percent threshold.
Clear skies, high temperatures, low humidity, and strong, gusty, westerly winds will dry small diameter surface fuels, allowing for an increase in fire activity beginning in late morning or
noon. The greatest growth will likely be north of Twentymile Creek where consistent pine litter and steep slopes will align to allow for rapid fire growth to the north and northeast by surface fire as well as occasional torching and short-range spotting into the receptive fuel bed. Active flanking fire north of Doe Creek on the west side of Chewuch River is expected as well. (Wed night and Thu) The hottest day of the upcoming week. Temperatures at the lowest elevations of the incident will be in the upper 90s, with very low humidity. An approaching front for Thursday mid-afternoon will push wind to gust around 35 mph.
Active fire behavior is anticipated with strong west/southwesterly winds and weather favorable for active growth. Sustained growth to the northeast is expected on the northern perimeter of
the fire where fire is expected to grow to Dodd Creek, fill in between Honeymoon Creek and Yarrow Creek, and continue paralleling Twentymile Creek to the northeast. Further south, fire along Pebble Creek will likely stall at Beaver Creek due to the wetter fuels near Beaver Meadows. On Friday, strong wind with gusts to around 30 mph is expected again due to the front, with a wind shift occurring. Temperatures will be 12 to 18 degrees colder, however, so humidity will be higher. There is a threat of showers and thunderstorms. Moderate precipitation expected Friday and Friday night.
Anticipated after 72 hours:
Intermittent "wet" days with elevated humidity, widespread cloud cover, and moderate chances of precipitation are expected to alternate with "dry" days resulting in inconsistent fire growth. Fire is expected to grow in fits and starts with pulses of growth alternating with reduced activity due to the vacillating weather patterns. It is unlikely that the fire area will receive sufficient precipitation to halt fire growth, or that enough consistently dry windy days will arrive consecutively to allow for widespread active fire growth to get reestablished.
Acres by ownership: Private-672 ac., Non-FS 173 ac., WA-DFW-798 ac, USFS-57,151 ac. Fire cause remains under investigation.
Aviation assets are shared with the Cedar Creek fire to the west of Winthrop.
IR Flight was cancelled last night due to weather.
Strong warming after some light rainfall with gusty afternoon wind, up to 22 mph. Smoke due to local fires continues to impede air operations.