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Friday, August 7, 2015

Yosemite National Park Wildland Fire Update #10, Five Active Fires

Yosemite Fire Update #10, August 7, 2015 Yosemite National Park

Lightning caused fires being monitored and managed for multiple objectives:

Periodic thunderstorms have continued and over the month of July and early August there are now 5 lightning caused fires being monitored for multiple objectives. Lightning caused fires can take days or weeks to detect because vegetation has to dry out enough to create smoke or visible flames after the storm passes over. Additional fires may be discovered, as temperatures rise and fuels dry out. Most of these fires are small; single tree strikes that amount to less than a tenth of an acre. These fires are in the wilderness and are being monitored by either fire crews hiking into the fire areas or via air reconnaissance due to location, sparse fuels, and low growth potential. Thunderstorms, lightning and fire have been part of the ecosystem for thousands of years and are necessary for natural processes and the long term health of forests. Yosemite engines and crews, 2 Bureau of Land Management engines, Whiskeytown Fire Module, and overhead personnel from Point Reyes are monitoring these fires.

Current fires being monitored:

Cathedral (37 51.078 x 119 25.120 – Tuolumne Co., 9400’El., 8/2). This is 0.20 of a mile off the John Muir Trail to Cathedral Lakes. The perimeter is actively smoldering and creeping through lodgepole pine needles and logs and has good potential to grow until it hits natural barriers. The fire is 0.20 acres in size and is being monitored.

Middle (37 51.538 x 119 41.194 - Tuolumne Co., 8043’El., 7/27). It is west of White Wolf and south of the Middle Tuolumne River. It is at 0.90 acres, and may be visible from Tioga Road. It continues to smolder and creep through down logs, pine needles and other vegetation. It is in a red fir and lodgepole pine forest.
YNP Dark Fire
YNP Dark Fire
Dark (37 50.575 x 119 37.153 – Mariposa Co., 8200’ el., 7/ 9). This fire is along the Yosemite Creek Campground Road and smoke is periodically visible from both the campground and Tioga roads. It is at 10.5 acres, and continues to creep and smolder through red fir duff and needles. The most active perimeter is to the east and near the Lukens cut-off trail – the trail is temporarily closed. Fire crews will be parked and working along Yosemite Creek Campground Road. For firefighter and visitor safety, drivers are urged to use caution while driving in the area of parked fire equipment. Fire crews are securing the edges of the fire by burning along the most active perimeter.

White Cascade (37 54.926 x 119 23.780 - Tuolumne Co, at 9000’ el., 7/3). This remote fire is east of Glen Aulin High Sierra camp, east of Conness Creek, and west of Tuolumne Meadows, and is at 0.68 acres. This high elevation fire, in a lodge pole pine forest, poses no threat to trails and has a low spread potential. Smoke may be visible in Tuolumne Meadows.

Quartzite (37 43.871 x 119 25.200 - Mariposa Co., 8387’ el., 7/27). It is approximately 0.5 miles south of Merced Lake, mid-slope and on a north aspect. It is smoldering in mountain hemlock, western white pine and lodgepole pine. This fire is contained to natural barriers.

Stubblefield (38 02.743 x 119 36.625 – Tuolumne Co., 7659’ el., 8/3). This fire is in Stubblefield Canyon and west of the Pacific Crest Trail and at the northeast section of the park; it is very remote. It is most likely a lightning strike holdover. Currently, it is 2-3 acres in size, in a red fir and Jeffrey Pine forested area, with other sparse vegetation.
YNP Stubblefield Fire
YNP Stubblefield Fire
New fires that were found and were suppressed: Rancheria, Fireplace, Ribbon were found August 3 and were put out. In addition, Indian Canyon and the Creek have been suppressed August 6, 2015.

Air Quality in the park is being affected by numerous fires throughout California. For more information refer to the web sites listed below. Currently no roads are closed within the park. The Lukens cut-off trail, south of the Tioga Road, is temporarily closed.

As with all fires, staff and visitor safety is of paramount importance. Each fire, regardless of size, is assessed for the appropriate course of action.

For More Information
Fire information: gary_wuchner@nps.gov, (209) 372-0480
Yosemite Web: http://www.nps.gov/yose/blogs/fireinfo.htm.
Air Quality Sites: http://www.californiasmokeinfo.blogspot.com/ & http://viewer.smoke.airfire.org/run/standard/CANSAC-2km/2015062200/ and http://airnow.gov/index.cfm?action=airnow.main and www.mariposacounty.org/aqi
Yosemite Wildland Fire Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Yosemite-Fire-and-Aviation/124632964255395
Twitter: @yosemitefire
Nixle - Emergency Alerts and Updates– www.nixle.com

Twitter links

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****REMINDER**** Every fire has the ability to be catastrophic. The wildland fire management environment has profoundly changed. Growing numbers of communities, across the nation, are experiencing longer fire seasons; more frequent, bigger, and more severe, fires are a real threat. Be careful with all campfires and equipment.
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