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Miriam Fire

Unit Information

Okanogan/Wenatchee National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
Washington
Wenatchee, WA 98801

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Miriam Fire Update - September 16, 2018

Miriam Fire Wildfire
News – 9/16/2018

Fire Information Line: 509-653-1468 September 16, 2018 – 10 a.m.

Acres: 5,400 Percent Containment: 50% Start Date: 07/30/18

Current situation: Firefighters took advantage of the cloud cover and cooler weather to scout different fire line of the Miriam Fire yesterday. Because wetting rains are forecasted today, firefighters will hold and improve the line along the Forest Road Spur #530 and remove snags and debris that may have fallen over the road if weather conditions allow.

The Naches Initial Attack Crew spotted two puffs of smoke well inside the interior of the fire’s edge from the White Pass Ski Area. They also hiked south to Hogback Mountain where they saw little heat down the Miriam Drainage, to the west of where the fire started in the drainage on July 30. Today, the crew will pull equipment such as sprinkler systems left in place in case they was needed more than a week ago.

Two firefighters hiked along the Round Mountain ridgeline north of where the fire pushed past the control line last weekend. A good portion of smoke coming off the active northeastern section is generated farther south of the ridge and channeling up chimney-like chutes from the bottom of a bowl. The fire is still south of the ridgeline and west of the #530 road spur. Otherwise, the northern side of this northeastern section of the fire was holding and cooling.

If conditions allow, the Entiat Interagency Hotshots will strengthen the control line they burned for the past couple of days. This blackened area leads from an older control line and goes north along the #530 road after the second switchback, leading to a handline constructed by firefighters this week. The goal is to keep the fire's active northeast corner in check in preparation for upcoming warmer weather this week. The burn operations were left to consume the remaining fuels, filling in the area directly west of #530. While fire area has received scattered showers this week and moderated fire activity, wetting rains are forecasted today. After the rains subside, the crew will go back to this area to see what needs to be cleaned up or filled in, including removing any downed trees over the road.

The Burned Area Emergency Response, or BAER, team arrived Naches Ranger District Office. BAER teams are made up of earth scientists that will assess whether the Miriam Fire burned severely enough to create environmental hazards that pose a threat to public safety and critical natural or culture resources. If emergency conditions are found, they will identify steps to mitigate potential hazards to the safety of people, property and values-at-risk.

Announcement: Level 2 fire restrictions still exist on the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest prohibiting building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire, or stove fire, including briquette fires, and torches. On Monday, that will change to Level 1 allowing some fires in designated campgrounds, special use areas and in wilderness areas. Find more information at: https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/okawen/alerts-notices/?cid=fsbdev3_053600#stageII and go here for a list of campgrounds where fires will be allowed starting Monday: https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd592042.pdf. Campfires are never allowed above 5,000 feet elevation on the Wenatchee National Forest.

Evacuation Levels: Evacuation and closure areas have been reduced. The Yakima County Office of Emergency Management has reduced all Level 3 (Go!) evacuation levels in the Miriam Fire area to Level 1 (Ready). Level 1 (Ready) evacuations remain in effect for homes and organizations along Highway 12, Clear Lake, and the Tieton Road. Yakima County Emergency Management officials will continue to coordinate with fire managers to assess the need for any additional adjustments to the levels as work on the fire continues. Personnel/Resources: 2 hand crews,4 engines, 1 falling modules (64 total personnel) Location: Two miles east of White Pass Ski Area, within the Goat Rocks Wilderness on the Naches Ranger District, 13 miles east of Packwood, WA Values at Risk: White Pass Ski Resort and area; recreational cabins, camps and resorts on Clear and Rimrock Lakes; State Highway 12; Goat Rocks Wilderness; and northern spotted owl, bull trout, and other wildlife habitat Estimated Incident Containment or completion: September 30, 2018 Smoke Information: Smoke will likely be visible in the morning and clearing in the afternoon. For further smoke information visit wasmoke.blogspot.com/p/state.html Weather and Fire Behavior: There is a 70 percent of wetting rains today with a maximum temperature of 58. Winds are forecasted to be 7-10 mph out of the southwest with gusts up to 28 mph. Firefighters were still waiting for the wetting rains that were forecasted to start Saturday. However, the cloud cover and cooler weather have kept fire activity subdued this week. That could change when with a warming trend forecasted on Monday. Today, fire behavior is expected to include creeping on the majority of the fire. Closures: The size of the area closure has been scaled back, but remains in effect on the Okanogan-Wenatchee and Gifford Pinchot National Forests. Maps and a list of affected areas can be found at inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/closures/6066/ or https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd589952.pdf The forest closure to the area encompasses the area south of Highway 12, west of Clear Lake and the 1207 Road, and east of the Pacific Crest Trail. Please be aware of fire traffic still in the area. The North Fork Tieton Road #1207 road, #1200-530 road and #688 Road, in addition to the Bear Creek Mountain trail #1130 remain closed to public access. For Online Miriam Fire Updates visit: Inciweb at https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6066/ Miriam Fire Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/MiriamFire