Superior National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
Duluth, MN 55808
Foss Lake Fire Update
Wednesday, May 25, 2016, 9:00 a.m.
MNICS Team C, Brian Pisarek, Incident Commander
Phone: 218-365-2216 (new number) Location: US Forest Service, 1393 Hwy 169, Ely, open 8 am–6 pm
Size: 1015 acres Containment: 70 percent Fire Start Date: May 19, 2016
Resources: 6 crews, 2 CCMI camp crews, 1 light helicopter, 1 engine, 1 water tender, 213 total personnel
Current Situation: Firefighters flew the fire perimeter yesterday afternoon with a Palm IR (a handheld thermal imager) and detected just three pockets of heat in the interior. Saw line has been constructed around the entire perimeter, and firefighters have mopped up into the burned area at least fifty feet from the perimeter. Today they will continue to mop up, increasing the depth to the one-hundred-foot standard. Crews are also starting to backhaul excess equipment, hose, and trash off the fireline. With guidance from resource advisors, firefighters will begin to rehabilitate the fireline and other areas affected by fire-suppression activity. For example, they will pull all flagging, flush cut stumps along portages and the lakeshore, and repair water bars. The Chinook helicopter was released from the incident, and the light (type 3) helicopter will be used for backhauling. Three crews remain camped on Clark and Crab Lakes while remaining crews travel to and from the fire each day.
Weather and Fire Behavior: Today will be mostly cloudy with the temperature reaching the high 60s. The relative humidity continues to increase, hovering around 45 percent. Winds will increase noticeably today, gusting to 20 mph. Thunderstorms are likely this afternoon, bringing a quarter inch or more of rain and some lightning. The fire behavior analyst does not expect active fire behavior today. However, downed and standing-dead trees, stumps, and the organic duff layer hold significant heat that could flare up as weather conditions change, making thorough mop-up a critical component of the fire suppression efforts.
Closures: BWCAW entry point #4 (Crab Lake entry point) will reopen on Friday morning. The current closure order remains in effect until then, and travel and camping are not currently allowed on the following BWCAW portages, lakes/rivers, and associated campsites:
· portage from Burntside Lake to Crab Lake (entry point #4)
· portage from Cummings Lake to Korb Lake; portage from Cummings Lake to Korb River
· lakes and associated portages: Crab, Boulder, Phantom, Battle, Sprite, Meat, Clark, Glimmer, Hassle, Saca, Little Crab, Korb, Maxine, Barefoot, Little Jig, Silaca, Coxey Pond, Lunetta, Schlamn, Soroll, Glenmore, Western, Blick, Chad, Dugout, and Pine.
· Pine Creek east of Trout Lake
· portage from Trout Lake to Pine Lake
Closure signs are posted at access points to delineate the closure area. The closure order and map are located at http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/closures/4740/