The Bridge Creek Fire on the Colville Reservation was ignited by lightning on the evening of August 8, 2017. It is located 13 miles north-northeast of Keller, Washington, and has spread to more than 1200 acres in size.
The fire held along the southwest flank thanks to constant round-robin scoop-and-drops from a fleet of three “Fire Boss” single engine scoop planes plus additional bucket drops from three Type 2 Medium-lift helicopters and a Type 1 Heavy-lift helicopter. The Fire Bosses were scooping water from Twin Lakes, a few miles east of the fire, and the helicopters were mainly using Cody Lake to the northwest as a water source.
Crews successfully constructed hand fireline between Bridge Creek and the fire to anchor the fire’s western flank, and also built handline on the south side of the fire from the creek to the ridgetop to tie in with a dozer line in an attempt to secure the southern flank. Today firefighters will scout the northeast side of the fire to determine indirect fireline locations.
The fire grew to the north and the east on Friday, and similar growth is expected today. Fuels are heavy, dense, dry, and continuous, the terrain is very steep with deep canyons, and the wind will be in alignment with the terrain over the next two days, leading to the anticipated increase in size.
Weather will be slightly cooler today (85 degrees predicted) and cooler yet on Sunday as winds pick up from the southwest, gusting to 25 mph. The chance of thunderstorms will increase today in the afternoon and evening. Minimum relative humidity is predicted to be 26%.
There is heavy fire traffic from Keller to Brush Creek, and up Brush Creek Road for several miles. Local travelers are asked to drive cautiously between the Twin Lakes area and Keller.
Northwest Incident Management Team 6 took over management of the fire at 6 pm on Friday.
Summit Trail has been closed to ensure public safety.
Fire at a Glance
Location: 13 miles NNE of Keller,WA
9 Water tenders
1 Type 2 medium helicopter
(Additional helicopters and other air support have been loaned from Omak, Deer Park, and Wenatchee as available.)
Closures: The Summit Trail is closed. No other closures are in effect.