September 23 Daily Update
Incident: Yakima Complex Wildfire
Current Situation: The Wild Rose fire has not grown in the past four days. All control lines are holding. Today crews continue mopping up to assure no heat is detected that would jeopardize control lines. Pockets of unburned fuel within the interior of the fire are expected to produce smoke until extinguished by rain and snow. The remaining fires on the Complex are contained and are being mopped up or are in patrol status (extinguished, but monitored) with the exception of Gold Hill and Kettle Creek fires. These fires are in the Norse Peak and William O. Douglas Wilderness areas and may be seen from Highway 410. The fires are being monitored. Action will be taken, if needed. Managers are assessing continued resource needs today and reassigning personnel, when possible.
Weather Outlook: A low pressure system will move across the region today, resulting in increased high cloud cover with slightly cooler and more moist conditions. A cold front is expected Monday night, cooling temperatures through mid-week. No significant moisture is anticipated. West winds 4 - 8 mph in the morning shifting to northeast in the afternoon 5 - 8 mph.
Incident Summary: There are an estimated 75 lightning fires in the Yakima Complex. Most are small, contained and being monitored. Fires in the upper elevation areas are being evaluated to determine an appropriate course of action based on management objectives.
Traffic safety: With travelers heading home after the weekend, expect an increase in traffic. There is significant fire emergency traffic on Highway 97 and Highway 12 near Rimrock and the Wild Rose Fire. Drivers are advised to use caution, slow down, and expect some delays when travelling in these areas.
Fire Prevention: Roadside fires are extremely common this time of year. Be particularly cautious any time you pull a trailer; ensure your tires are inflated to the proper level and check the grease on your wheel bearings to avoid a blown tire. A safety chain dragging too low will bounce off the road surface and produce sparks that are difficult to see as you drive and start fires without you being aware of the ignition. Avoid driving your vehicle off of road surfaces and into tall grasses. Catalytic converters and exhaust systems heat up to very high temperatures, easily igniting dry grasses and shrubs.
Forest Closures: The Cle Elum Ranger District has issued a closure for French Cabin Trail #1307 and Kachess Trail #1315.
For road and trail closure information contact: Cle Elum Ranger District: 509.852.1100, Naches Ranger District: 509.653.1401 DNR Southeast Region office: 509.925.8522
Cooperating Agencies: Department of Natural Resources, Kittitas Valley Fire Rescue, Kittitas County Fire Districts 1 and 7, Kittitas and Yakima County Sheriff Departments, United States Forest Service, and the Bureau of Land Management
Acres Burned: 3000
Structures Destroyed: 0
Closures: Stafford Creek area in Teanaway, and Trails in French Cabin Area (see below)
Water Tenders: 12
Total personnel: 593