The majority of the fire’s activity continues to be on the southern flanks, with the fire making short south and south easterly runs. This is mainly due to heavy fuels that are receptive to burning. However, winds have also been aligned to push the fire south. This is expected to change this afternoon, as the winds shift and start coming from the southeast, with gusts up to 15 mph.
Crews are focused on protecting structures south and southeast of the fire. At the fire’s southern tip, aircraft are dropping water and retardant, cooling areas of heat near values at risk and perimeter lines. A “super scooper” (fixed-wing aircraft with water hauling capabilities) will continue to assist crews with water drops, as conditions allow. Unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) are available to assist with reconnaissance in areas otherwise inaccessible. Yesterday, smoky skies and an inversion grounded aircraft for much of the morning and may continue to hamper air operation efforts.
The fire continues to move toward the Teklanika River along the western flank, but appears to be losing momentum as it hits marshy, wet areas. Crews worked diligently to secure fireline to the northwest, protecting home’s north of the fire and will likely begin conducting more structural assessments in the coming days. To the northeast, firefighters made good progress completing over 1,000 feet of line, exposing mineral soil and removing flammable materials, to help prevent forward progression of the fire. Along the eastern flank, fire crews monitored the minimal fire behavior on the fire’s edge.
More dry weather is expected in the coming days across the fire area. Temperatures in the mid-80s with relative humidity in the high 20s are likely. Dry thunderstorms are expected tomorrow with scattered lightning possible on the eastern side of the fire. Isolated strikes are possible on the west end. Dry lightning could cause new fire starts and increase fire activity in the area. Critical weather conditions are expected over the weekend as well, with increasing temperatures and decreasing humidity levels.
Ready (prepare your property): All areas including the City of Anderson, Clear, and Clear Space Force Station
Set (ready “go bag”): All cabins along the Teklanika River that are between two and five miles of the current fire perimeter
GO (grab your “go bag” and evacuate): Anderson Subdivision, Kobe Ag Subdivision, Quota Subdivision, all cabins along the Teklanika River that are within two miles of the current fire perimeter. All areas accessed by Kobe Road.
Sheltering or evacuation-related information: The Tri-Valley School in Healy, approximately 40 miles south of the city of Anderson, and the Nenana School, 25 miles north of the city of Anderson, will serve as evacuation shelters. Contact the Denali Borough at (907) 683-1330, see the Borough’s Facebook page or visit denaliborough.org
All other fire information: Clear Fire Information, (907) 290-2921; Alaska Fire Information, (907) 356-5511; akfireinfo.com, inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/8178, and on the Alaska Division of Forestry and BLM Alaska Fire Service Facebook pages.