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Horse Creek Complex

Unit Information

Willamette National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
Springfield, OR 97477

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Horse Creek Complex Update - August 27

Horse Creek Complex Wildfire
News – 8/27/2017

Weather, Fire Behavior and Air Quality
A change toward hotter, drier weather and an accompanying increase in fire activity is expected to continue through tomorrow. A cooling trend is predicted beginning Tuesday. Air quality will likely be poor in some areas due to fire activity in the Willamette area and drift smoke from other Oregon fires.

The Whitewater Fire is burning in the Mount Jefferson Wilderness and Willamette National Forest land located approximately 13 miles east of Detroit. Crews will continue to extinguish heat from previous firing operations and strengthen existing control lines from the southwest to the northwest in order to protect public values and private timberlands in those areas.

The Little Devil Fire continues to progress slowly southward from its location 2½ miles southeast of the Breitenbush Hot Springs area. Control lines are being constructed south of Breitenbush to keep the fire away from the community and to protect summer homes.

The Horse Creek Complex includes the Avenue Fire, burning three miles southeast of McKenzie Bridge, and the nearby wilderness fires Olallie, Separation and Roney. A heavy smoke layer has minimized fire spread over the last several days. Firefighters continue to plan and construct control lines to protect areas north of the fire and in the McKenzie Bridge area.

The Rebel Fire is burning in heavy timber and steep terrain along the South Fork of the McKenzie River. Firefighters are holding the fire east of FSR 19 (Aufderheide Drive) and improving existing contingency lines.

Because most fires are burning in heavy timber and steep terrain with poor access, firefighters are generally using indirect tactics – constructing fireline some distance from the fire’s edge and either allowing the fire to burn up to the control line or burning off hazardous fuels between the control line and the main fire. This overall strategy aims to protect firefighter safety while still accomplishing containment objectives.

Transfer of Command
The Southwest Area Team 1 Incident Management Team assumed command of the suite of fires from the Pacific Northwest Team 2 Incident Management Team today. The fires will continue to be managed at the Type 1 level, the highest level of incident management.

Community Meeting
There will be a community meeting on Tuesday, August 29, to discuss the Rebel Fire and the Horse Creek Complex. The meeting will be held at the Upper McKenzie Community Center at 54745 McKenzie River Drive in Blue River, Oregon, at 6:00 p.m.

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