Middle Fork Complex Daily Update – September 16, 2021
Northwest Incident Management Team 6
Shawn Sheldon, Incident Commander
Phone: 425-324-1267 (8am-8pm)
Size: 29,793 acres Origin/Location: North of Oakridge, OR
Contained: 37% Date/Time Detected: July 29, 2021, 2:00 p.m.
Number of Personnel: 695 Cause: Lightning
Westfir, OR – Yesterday, crews continued to mop up and remove heavier 1000-hour fuels (dead wood 3 to 8 inches in diameter) near the fireline along the west and northwest perimeter of the fire. Additional firing operations were conducted along the southwest to secure the line near Helispot -13. Hose lays are being pulled out along contingency lines in Division M and backhauled to be cleaned, rolled and returned to the cache. With precipitation in the forecast, crews are constructing water bars on dozer and hand lines to help channel run-off and prevent erosion. More equipment will be arriving on site to speed up the process.
Firefighters will continue to actively improve containment on the west flank of Gales Fire, south of Forest Road 18. Crews will mop-up and hold recently completed burns, strengthening primary containment lines, on the NW (N USFS Rd 18 & Rd 1832) and the SW (USFS Rd 1824) flanks of the fire. Resources will be improving indirect lines on the east side of the fires and scouting for opportunities to move indirect lines closer to the main fire. Firing operations will be continuing in Division G and T as conditions allow.
Weather: High pressure building back in overnight brought cool temperatures and poor humidity recovery levels to start the day. Expect dry conditions today along with lower relative humidity, but lighter winds. Elevated to near-critical fire weather is expected on Friday ahead of the precipitation, which is forecasted to arrive late in the day and overnight. Rainfall from ½ to ¾ of an inch is expected to continue into Saturday and Sunday.
Smoke: Expect winds to be primarily terrain driven this morning, and smoke that settled in overnight will likely begin to dissipate by upslope/up valley wind movement later this morning. Smoke from the Bull Complex Fire will likely drift toward Bend and La Pine again today as was observed yesterday.
Safety: Know how to prevent wildfires by properly using outdoor equipment, learning campfire safety, and checking for fire restrictions and closures. Please recreate responsibly! Learn more at https://www.recreateresponsibly.org.
Closures: Hunting season is in effect and as such, please be sure to check all the area closures before heading out. Please visit https://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/willamette/alerts-notices for information on additional closures and maps.