Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks
National Park Service
47050 Generals Highway
Three Rivers, CA 93271
SOUTHERN AREA INCIDENT MANAGEMENT BLUE TEAM Mark Morales – Incident Commander
KNP Complex Update September 18, 2021
Acres: 17,857 acres (based on infrared flight) Percent Containment: 0% Start Date: September 10, 2021 Cause: Lightning Jurisdiction: Sequoia Kings Canyon National Park
Resources: 416 personnel including 10 crews, 28 engines, 6 water tenders, and 8 helicopters
The KNP Complex, ignited by lightning on the night of September 9, continues to grow in Sequoia National Park. The two fires that comprised the complex, the Paradise Fire and the Colony Fire, merged yesterday, and going forward will be considered a single fire.
Yesterday afternoon, smoke dispersed at the northeast end of the fire, and airflow increased, causing activity to pick up significantly. As of this morning, the fire has reached the vicinity of Red Fir maintenance area, with some spotting further north. Despite little to no relative humidity recovery overnight, fire growth overnight was fairly limited. The fire reached a small area of the Giant Forest yesterday, in the area known as the Four Guardsmen, where trees had been thoroughly prepped in recent days. The General Sherman Tree did not see fire yesterday. Hotshot crews are assessing on the ground this morning to ascertain if conditions are stable enough for more crews to reengage in this area.
By contrast, the southern end of the fire remained under a smoke inversion all day yesterday, with moderate fire behavior. The fire did not grow significantly in the direction of Three Rivers or park headquarters yesterday. Tulare County Fire and CAL FIRE continue to establish dozer lines and reinforce existing containment features, such as the Shepherd Saddle Road, between the community and the current fire footprint. Structure protection is underway in cabin communities along the Mineral King Road, with more resources assigned today to ramp up these efforts.
Winds are expected to pick up in and around the fire area. A red flag warning is in place starting at 5 p.m. today through Sunday. Crews are preparing for changes and possible significant increases in fire activity. There have been no changes to evacuation warnings or orders at this time. Residents currently under evacuation warning are urged to be ready to mobilize and leave should the warning escalate to an evacuation order. Explore a map of the areas under evacuation warning and order, as well as other evacuation resources, at www.tularecounty.ca.gov/emergencies.
Sequoia National Park is closed to the public. Kings Canyon National Park remains open, but air quality impacts are significant. Air quality is seriously affected in Three Rivers. Particulate matter readings have been in the “hazardous” range for much of the day. Communities further from the parks are also feeling air quality impacts. Track your local air quality at www.fire.airnow.gov.
Wildfires are a No Drone Zone. If you fly, we can’t. Every time a drone is spotted near the fire all aircraft are grounded until we can be sure the drone is clear of this area. More info visit Know Before You Fly, http://knowbeforeyoufly.org.
Fire Information (NEW): (559)-640-7824 (8 a.m. to 8 p.m.), 2021.KNP@firenet.gov