Cougar Creek, Lost and Bannock Lakes Fires Sunday, September 9, 2018
Cougar Creek Fire: Minimal fire activity was reported on all divisions of the fire Saturday. Fire suppression activities continue, including repair of fire lines, dozer lines and road impacts. Trees and vegetation that was removed in the construction of fire lines is being chipped and piled. No lightning was observed over the fire Friday night, however Saturday morning the Cougar Creek Fire assisted with initial attack on two lightning-caused fires near Blewett Pass, the Iron East and Iron West Fires. One 20-person hand crew, 6 fire engines, and 1 dozer responded.
The Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest is beginning a process to assess how severe the fires have impacted the forest and what actions could be implemented to lessen the post-fire impacts. The Miriam, Cougar Creek, Crescent Mountain and McLeod Fires will be reviewed by a team of soil scientists, hydrologists and other experts. The process is called the burned area emergency response or BAER process. Molly Hanson, Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest’s BAER Coordinator says “fire doesn’t stop at land ownership lines and neither does the potential for post-fire impacts.” She stressed that it is important that landowners work directly with the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service and other agencies to determine appropriate actions needed to protect their property from post-fire impacts.
Lost Fire and Bannock Lakes Fires: These fires show minimal activity and are being monitored by air.
Weather and Fire Behavior: A weak but moist frontal system will pass through the region Sunday and Sunday night. Increasing clouds will bring the chance for a few sprinkles. Temperatures will remain cool and humidity high. The system will depart Monday afternoon and be followed by breezy westerly winds but low pressure will return bringing cool temperatures and high humidity through the week. Fire activity should remained subdued but the larger fuels will continue to burn until significant rains occur.
Restrictions and Closures: Fire use restrictions are still in place. No campfires are permitted. To ensure public and firefighter safety, many road and trail closures remain in effect. Forest visitors are encouraged to call or visit the local Ranger Station or visit the Forest’s Interactive Forest Closure Map found at: https://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/okawen/alerts-notices. Closures are in effect in the Tommy Creek, Mad River, Upper Mad River, Potato Creek, and Mud Creek areas. The Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail (PCT) also remains closed from Suiattle Pass to High Bridge. The PCT detour is from Suiattle Pass to Stehekin. More information is available at www.pcta.org.
Areas near the Cougar Creek Fire that are open for public use: Fox Creek, Lake Creek, Silver Falls, and Cottonwood campgrounds are open. Shady Pass Road #5900, North Fork Entiat Trailhead, and trails within the Glacier Peak Wilderness area on the Entiat Ranger District are open and accessible. In addition, the Chiwawa River Road, and campgrounds and trails off that road, are open for use.
Acreage: 42,687 Containment: 78 percent Personnel: 343 Cause: Lightning Incident Mgt Team: NW Team 10 Lawson (Type 2) Phone: 509-664-9210 (8 a.m. to 8 p.m.) Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Inciweb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6053 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cougarcreekfire Sign up for Daily Updates: https://bit.ly/2sRTpMp