Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
857 West South Jordan Parkway
South Jordan, UT 84095
Bald Mountain Fire Update
Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team- Todd Pechota, Incident Commander
Information Center: 406-848-1940
Hours of operation: 7 a.m. – 9 p.m.
September 16, 2018
Special Note: The Rocky Mountain Type 1 Incident Management Team (IMT), with Todd Pechota as Incident Commander, assumed command of the Bald Mountain Fire this morning at 6 a.m. Great Basin 1, a Type 1 IMT, had been managing the Bald Mountain Fire as a branch of the Pole Creek Fire. Great Basin 1 continues to manage the Pole Creek Fire.
Current Situation: As additional resources arrive, the IMT will increase staffing on the Bald Mountain divisions and continue scouting possible containment lines. Due to the steep, inaccessible terrain and other hazards within the fire area, indirect fireline will be constructed in many places to reduce exposure and risk to firefighters. As weather and fire conditions allow, crews may conduct firing operations to remove fuels to strengthen containment lines and minimize impacts to values at risk.
On the north end of the fire (Division J), near Loafer Canyon, great progress has been made constructing dozer lines in between the fire’s edge and structures. Today firefighters will continue to construct dozer and hand lines and improve existing lines in an effort to protect Woodland Hills and Elk Ridge areas. Structure protection is in place and structure assessments will continue.
The west side of the fire is divided into two divisions, Divisions A and D. In Division D, near Dry Mountain, firefighters will continue to construct dozer and hand line working their way from the Division J/ D break to the south. Structure protection is in place and assessments will continue in areas of Santaquin nearest to the fire. In Division A near Bald Mountain, the fire is burning in steep, rocky terrain with numerous snags. Due to the increased risk and exposure to firefighters, crews will continue to scout locations for containment lines.
In Division K, on the south end of the fire, crews will work towards completion of firing operations as needed and will improve existing lines. Completion of this line will help prevent movement of the fire to the south and will help provide a secure line for the Pole Creek Fire’s south west edge. The eastern flank of the fire is burning into the Pole Creek Fire and is not currently staffed.
Weather: A Red Flag Warning for high winds and low relative humidity is in effect for today. Ridge top wind gusts to 40 mph are predicted along with relative humidity of 14-18 percent. Critical fire weather conditions will continue; however, a trend of improving conditions will start on Sunday and last through early next week. There is a slight chance of thunderstorms with gusty winds and lightning being the main threat from any storms that do develop.
Closures and Public Safety: The public is reminded to expect heavy fire traffic in Payson where the Bald Mountain Incident Command Post is located. Evacuations and pre-evacuations remain in place for several areas in the fire vicinity. A list of current evacuations is available at http://www.utahcounty.gov/Dept/Sheriff/Index.asp
Location: 7 miles northeast of Mona, UT Start Date: August 24, 2018
Size: 13,509 acres Percent Contained: 0
Total Personnel: estimated 508 personnel, with more arriving Cause: Lightning