Cougar Creek Fire Update 8/18




Cougar Creek, Lost and Bannock Lakes Fires Friday, August 18, 2018 Acreage: 35,809 Containment: 35 percent Personnel: 1,106

Cougar Creek Fire: Smoke decreased on Friday with winds exceeding 25 mph, pushing the smoke out of the valleys and increasing the fire behavior across the area. The increased fire behavior led to interior sections of the fire area burning more actively, which created the column of smoke that was visible for most of the afternoon. Resources assigned to the incident also supported initial attack in the area following yesterday’s lightning activity.

On Saturday, additional crews will work on the fire’s southern edge from the Sugar Loaf Lookout area to Gold Ridge, continuing to prepare the area for low intensity burnout operations that will continue when conditions allow. Contingency lines are also being prepared from the fire’s western edge north toward the Lost Fire with mechanical equipment, chipping, and dozer lines. Crews will continue to mop-up, hold and patrol contained fire edge in the Entiat Valley as well as use aviation to prevent fire growth around Grandma Creek.

Lost Fire: Resources and equipment from the Lost Fire have completed work and moved to the Cougar Creek Fire to support efforts. There was no additional movement of the inserted into Lost Fire Friday; the acreage remains at 114.

Bannock Lakes Fire: This lightning-caused fire is approximately 17 miles west of Stehekin in the Glacier Peaks Wilderness. The fire is currently around 444 acres and is being monitored by incident leadership. It is burning among large rocky outcroppings and isolated clusters of timber in steep, inaccessible terrain. The Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail (PCT) is closed from Suiattle Pass to High Bridge. The PCT detour is from Suiattle Pass to Stehekin. More information and a map is available at www.pcta.org.

Weather and Fire Behavior: Winds are diminishing over the Entiat River Valley Saturday, which will trap smoke from three fires in the valleys. Winds are also expected to shift to the east, exposing areas of the fire to wind and drying conditions. Trees burning on the northern sections are well sheltered, but still expected to show action within the interior of the perimeter. Spotting fires are still a concern crews will be focused on..

Traffic Safety: Expect a continued increase in both firefighter and public traffic in Leavenworth and Plain as we head into the weekend. Motorists are encouraged to drive slowly. The Chelan County Sheriff’s Office has also lowered the speed limit to 25 MPH on Entiat River Road between Mad River Road and to the end of the road (approximately near milepost 25).

Cougar Creek Fire Evacuation Levels Reduced: · Evacuation levels at Entiat River Road north from Mad River Road to the end of Entiat River Road, Ardenvoir, and Mad River Road are reduced from Level 3 to Level 2. Although roadblocks will not be staffed, deputies will patrol the valley and strictly enforce the lower speed limit of 25 mph. · Evacuation levels at Entiat River Road from Crum Canyon north to Ardenvoir and all of Crum Canyon Road are reduced from Level 2 to Level 1. · Evacuation levels at Entiat River Road from 97A to Crum Canyon Road, Oklahoma Gulch Road, Navarre Coulee Road from Hwy 97-ALT to South Lakeshore Road, Johnson Creek Road, and First Creek Road are no longer in effect.

For more information, call the Chelan County Emergency Management at 509-667-6863 or visit their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/CCSOEM. An American Red Cross shelter, at 14916 US 97A in Entiat, is on standby. The Red Cross can be contacted at 509-663-3907.

Smoke: Smoke from the Cougar Creek Fire continues to affect surrounding communities. Individuals with respiratory problems are encouraged to acquire N95 masks. These masks are available at local fire stations, provided by the Chelan County Sheriff's Office. For more information on smoke and public health, go to www.wasmoke.blogspot.com or https://bit.ly/2J22754 (Spanish).

U.S. Forest Service Closure Orders: · Cougar Creek and Lost Fires: https://bit.ly/2MkmKew · Bannock Lakes Fire: https://bit.ly/2nezyF6 · Whitepine Fire: https://bit.ly/2nesWqg · Area businesses are open. Please consider showing your support by shopping in the local community.

Incident Management Team: The Pacific Northwest Incident Management Team 3 (Type 1) continues to work closely with cooperators from the US Forest Service, Washington Department of Natural Resources, Entiat Rural Fire District 8, Peshastin Rural District 6, Lake Wenatchee Fire and Rescue, Chelan County Sheriff’s Office, Chelan County Department of Emergency Management, Chelan County Public Utility Dept., WA Dept. of Transportation, American Red Cross, Chelan Public Schools, and Chelan Public Works.

Fire Information: Phone: 509-664-9210 (8 a.m. to 8 p.m.) Email: cougarcreekfireinfo2018@gmail.com Inciweb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6053/ Facebook: facebook.com/CougarCreekFire#WaWildfire #CougarCreekFire

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