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Delta Lake Fire

Unit Information

Superior National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
8901 Grand Ave Place
Duluth, MN 55808

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Delta Lake Fire and "West Zone" Fires Fact Sheet July 15, 2021

Delta Lake Fire Wildfire
Announcements – 7/15/2021

SUMMARY: The Delta Lake Fire continues to be the primary active fire within the West Zone Complex. It is burning predominantly on private and National Forest System lands, bumping up to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, in a thicket of waist- to chest-high blowdown that hampers firefighter access. Firefighting resources are working to establish a containment line around the 65-acre fire to prevent its spread.

YESTERDAY: Air resources continued to be critical to keeping the fire in check. Ground resources extended containment line south along the west flank and east over the top of the fire. Structure protection crews installed pumps, fire hose, and sprinklers around camps, lodges, and other structures nearest the fire. The noticeable additional smoke in the air was generated from the fires to the north in Canada.

TODAY: The containment line around the Delta Lake fire is likely to be completed, including pumps and fire hose around the perimeter. Access to water will help as “mop up” of the burned area begins. Mop up entails finding and extinguishing remaining heat so the fire does not spread outside of the containment area. It’s done by breaking apart smoldering debris and fully extinguishing embers. Firefighters mop up along the fire perimeter to ensure fireline is cooled down enough that it does not reignite, even during high winds. As with the access to the fire, the blowdown will make mop up more challenging for the firefighters.

Air resources will continue to drop water on active fire. Structure protection crews will periodically test and inspect operation of the pumps, hose, and sprinklers now in place.


The Astray, Picketts, and Hassel Fires are all in controlled status. The Forest continues to patrol and monitor the fires daily by air. Additionally, the Forest continues to monitor Canada’s wildfire activity along the international boundary.

WEATHER: High temperature will be around 80 degrees, with light, variable winds.

CAMPFIRE RESTRICTIONS: Campfires are prohibited on the Superior National Forest and in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Campfires are allowed in approved fire structures that have been installed and maintained by the Forest Service in fee campgrounds. More information: .

STATE RESTRICTIONS:Minnesota activated additional burning restrictions July 13 for the eastern portion of Roseau County and all of Beltrami, St. Louis, Koochiching, Lake, Lake of the Woods, and Cook counties. More: .

CLOSURES (Check before you go!):

These BWCAW entry points are closed:

•#56 – Kekekabic Trail East          •#74 – Kekekabic Trail West/Snowbank 

These BWCAW lakes, campsites, and portages are closed: 

•Parent •Adventure •Rifle •Disappointment •Bridge •Jitterbug •Fire •Ahsub

•Drag Primitive Management Area •Becoosin •Benezie


Location of Origin: Immediately north of Delta Lake, approx. 19 miles east of Ely. MN.

Start date:  July 7, 2021

Size: 65 acres

Percent Contained: 5%

Cause: Lightning

Resources Assigned:

·        Total personnel: 162

·        Engines: 5

·        Handcrews: 5

·        Helicopters: 2

·        Aircraft: Available

·        Dozers: 1

·        Excavators: 1


1. Check on closures and restrictions before you go.


1. A temporary flight restriction is in place over the fire area.

2. Flying drones in the restricted area will shut down air operations.

3. Move to shore if planes or helicopters are refilling water tanks or buckets from lakes. Do not move toward operations.

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