Big Meadows Fire Morning Update for June 15, 2013
Incident: Big Meadows Wildfire
Big Meadows Fire Update
Morning Update - June 15, 2013
Yesterday afternoon fire crews conducted a burnout operation to strengthen fire lines and reduces fuels along the southern flank of the fire in the Tonahutu Creek drainage. Fire staff consider the firing operation to have successfully strengthened the southern flank of the fire, effectively minimizing the probability of movement of the Big Meadows Fire to the south. This operation increased the fire to 479 acres.
Yesterday, air operations from the Big Meadows Fire provided a helicopter to assist a search and rescue operation to transport an injured climber in RockyMountainNational Park. To date, there have been no accidents or injuries associated with the Big Meadows Fire. With increased recreational activity over the weekend, the incident command staff urges visitors to the area to remain alert for increased traffic and on-going air operations associated with the fire.
Fire-fighting resources on the fire today, June 15, will include two initial attack modules of eight fire-fighters each, four interagency 20-person Type I hotshot crews, and two fire engines. Available air resources include two ‘air attack’ small planes used for fire reconnaissance, two light helicopters, a medium helicopter, and one large heavy helicopter. A National Guard Blackhawk helicopter remains on standby to assist fire operations in the event of a medical emergency.
There remains no imminent threat to any communities or structures; Rocky Mountain National Park remains open.
At 8:00 AM this morning, closures were lifted for five of the seven previously closed trailheads within the vicinityof the Big Meadows Fire. Trails that will open include: the two Tonahutu Spur Trails (one beginning at the Kawuneeche Visitor Center, the other near the North Inlet trailhead), the Grand Lake Lodge Spur Trail, the Timber Lake Trail, and the trail which branches toward Mount Ida from Milner Pass. The Timber Lake Trail will be open for day use only. Closures remain in effect for the Onahu Trail, the Green Mountain Trail, and the lower Tonahutu Trail. Trail closures do affect a section of the Continental Divide Trail that passes through the park. Know before you go, check with the VisitorCenter or Park Information Office at 970-586-1206.
All major roads and facilities in RockyMountainNational Parkare open as are our neighboring communities of GrandLakeand EstesPark. Visitors are strongly cautioned to be aware of increased traffic and aircraft associated with the fire. Keep alert, don’t get hurt.