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Alder, Mountaineer, and Moses Fires

Unit Information

Sequoia National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
Porterville, CA 93257

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Alder, Mountaineer and Moses Fires Update 11-5-18

Alder, Mountaineer, and Moses Fires Wildfire
News – 11/5/2018

For Immediate Release Date: November 5, 2018

Contact: Fire Information(559) 539-2607 ext. 2292

Current Fire Information:


Location: About ½ mile north of Summit Trailhead, in the Golden Trout Wilderness.

Acres Burned: Approximately 315 acres

Fire Discovered: October 13

Cause: Lightning

Resources: 60 total personnel: 3 Crew

Summary: The Mountaineer Fire is burning about a ½ mile north of the Summit Trailhead, on the north side of South Mountaineer Creek, in the Golden Trout Wilderness, on the Western Divide Ranger District. The Mountaineer Fire is about 1.5 miles east of the Alder Fire. Aerial reconnaissance flights continue to monitor the fire daily. The fire is in a remote area dangerous to access on foot due to a large number of dead standing trees. A confine and contain suppression strategy is being used to suppress this fire. Characteristic: The fire exhibited moderate fire behavior, slowly backing downhill. The fire will continue to move toward the Summit Trailhead, and toward South Mountaineer Creek. Crews have reopened and improved trails and previous fire lines to the south and west of the fire, preparing to use them for fire line as needed. Yesterday the Mountaineer Fire crossed the fire line on the Summit Trail in 3 places on the south side of the fire. These slop overs were less than ¾ acre in size. Crews contained them, with the assistance of helicopter water drops. The hand firing operation continued along the Summit Trail yesterday. Today, hand firing is planned along another section of the Summit Trail. The purpose of the firing operation is to reduce the fuel load, keep the fire within the containment area, and solidify containment sooner. Aerial ignition might be used today on the south side of the Mountaineer Fire if conditions are favorable. Local residents may see an increase in smoke coming from the fire area due to the firing operation. A helicopter will be mapping the fire perimeter today.

Closures: An area closure around the Alder and Mountaineer fires on the Western Divide Ranger District went into effect October 20.


Location: Five miles north of Camp Nelson by North Alder Creek

Acres Burned: Approximately 1,579 acres

Fire Discovered: October 4

Cause: Lightning

Containment: 45% contained

Resources: 148 total personnel: 3 hand crews, 8 engines, 2 helicopters, 1 excavator and 3 patrols

Summary: The Alder Fire, located on the Western Divide Ranger District, is burning north of North Alder Creek in dense timber with extensive tree mortality, many dead snags and heavy fuels on the ground. The extensive number of dead trees creates a serious safety concern for firefighters. Given these conditions, a confine and contain suppression strategy is being used to manage the fire.

Characteristic: The Alder Fire crossed the fire line in a 10 x 10 foot area yesterday by North Alder Creek on the southwest side of the fire near Doyle Springs. Firefighters contained this small slop over. They will watch it closely for several days. Two engines are working night shift to monitor the fire near the Doyle Springs and Sequoia Crest communities through the night. Aerial reconnaissance flights continue to monitor the fire each day.

The fire remains contained to the south, by North Alder Creek. The western perimeter of the Alder Fire has not crossed the Middle Fork of the Tule River. The Northwest flank of the fire has backed down into the Burro Creek drainage, and rock outcrops have slowed the progression northward and to the east. The fire remains confined to the ground, slowly creeping and smoldering among dead trees stressed by drought and killed by insects, cleaning up dead fuel on the ground in its path. Minimal growth in the perimeter is expected. A helicopter will be mapping the fire today.

Suppression repair of contingency fire lines is almost complete. Suppression repair of fire lines is done largely to mitigate the potential for erosion. The excavator is finishing suppression repair of secondary dozer lines on the west side of the fire today. Crews will be finishing suppression repair of secondary hand fire lines near the Sequoia Crest community. Resources for the Alder Fire are prepared for initial attack to respond to any new fires discovered on the Western Divide Ranger District.


Location: One mile south of Moses Mountain

Acres Burned: 0.3 acres

Fire Discovered: October 17

Cause: Lightning

Summary:The Moses Fire was discovered during an October 17 Alder Fire reconnaissance flight. The fire is located 1 mile south of Moses Mountain, west of the Upper Tule Grove, at the head of Pine Creek on the Western Divide Ranger District. Characteristic: The fire is exhibiting minimal fire behavior. The aerial reconnaissance flight found very little visible smoke from the Moses Fire yesterday. WEATHER OUTLOOK An area of high pressure aloft over the Eastern Pacific Ocean will be responsible for dry weather, light terrain driven winds, and above normal high temperatures in the early part of the week. Little diurnal change in relative humidity values is expected.


Increased smoke production is expected today, with the anticipated firing operations. Smoke is expected to stay at higher elevations. The smoke outlook for the fire area can be viewed at Information about air quality and what you can do to reduce the effects of smoke can be found at the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District’s website

U.S. Forest Service, Sequoia National Forest and Giant Sequoia National Monument Voice: 559-784-1500

Web: Twitter: @sequoiaforest OnCell App: Sequoia National Forest