Lone Pine, CA, July 11, 2018 - The Georges Fire (lightning-caused) is currently at 2,883 acres and is 42% contained. The fire is in Unified Command with SoCal Team 3, a Type 2 incident management team (assigned to the Inyo National Forest), CAL FIRE and the Inyo Sheriff’s Department. The fire started the afternoon of July 8, 2018.
The evacuation has been lifted for the Whitney Portal area, including campgrounds, residents, and the Whitney Portal Store.
Eager hikers started arriving at the Eastern Sierra Interagency Visitor Center in Lone Pine, Calif., soon after the announcement that the Whitney Portal would reopen Wednesday, July 11, at 6 p.m. The Whitney Portal Road was opened under the authority of the Inyo County Sheriff. The area was closed for the public’s safety due to the fire. The fire led to the evacuation of the popular Mt. Whitney Trailhead including campgrounds, residents, and Whitney Portal Store.
With a moderation in fire behavior, the evacuation has been lifted. The visitor center began issuing permits for both day and overnight hikers who have reservations for the Mt. Whitney Trailhead. Permits will be re-issued for those who were unable to complete their hike in the past few days due to the fire.
The visitor center will be fully staffed and information will be available to update hikers on the Georges Fire. In addition, hikers can request night box service by calling the Wilderness Permit Office at 760-873-2483.
Today, fire crews worked on strengthening containment lines. Firefighters that were on the fireline overnight were transported by helicopter to the helibase at Manzanar National Historic Site. These crews were camped in terrain inaccessible by vehicle, making helicopter shuttles necessary. Helicopters continued to support fire suppression efforts with water drops as needed.
Tonight, firefighters will continue to mop up and patrol in the fire area. Thunderstorms are predicted to move in to the area this evening, bringing the potential for erratic winds and heavy rains, which can lead to flash flooding in the burn area.
There are 627 personnel currently assigned to the incident, including 19 crews, 31 engines, 4 dozers, 8 helicopters, and 8 water tenders.