East Fork Fire Update 7/3/13
Incident: East Fork Wildfire
East Fork Fire
Ouray Ranger District
July 3, 2013 8:00 a.m.
Information Officers: Ted Pettis, Lora Schmillen, Megan Mast
Information Center 970-240-2049
Information Center Hours 7am-9pm
Incident: This wildland fire started on 6/15/2013; cause was lightning.
Location: 30 miles southeast of Montrose, CO.
Jurisdiction: Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre, & Gunnison National Forests
Cooperating Agencies: BLM, Gunnison County, Montrose County
Incident Commander: Rick Kusicko, Northern Rockies Type II Incident Management Team (IMT). The Incident Command Post (ICP) is located at the Columbine Middle School in Montrose.
Current Size: 447 acres Containment: 40%
Management Strategy: Full suppression
Structures Threatened: 20 residences, 15 commercial properties, and 5 outbuildings
Structures Lost: none
The incident team will be transferring from a Type II to a Type III Team
(As of Friday, 6:00am)
Status: Fire activity has been light lately; burning in spruce/fir fuels with creeping and single tree torching. Steep, rocky, inaccessible terrain (primarily below the Rim) with heavy dead/ down fuels that are extremely dry has made suppression efforts very difficult. The high elevation also affects crew and equipment efficiencies. Structure protection has been completed and engines are continuing to monitor the area.
The spike camp located at High Mesa will be relocated near Silver Jack Reservoir in the next few days. Gunnison County Road maintenance will continue to road blade, work on dust abatement, and apply mag-chloride to the Little Cimarron Rd. Please expect extended delays and call Gunnison County for more information
Yesterday’s Activities: Crews have completed fireline construction on the High Mesa area. They continued to mop up and put out hot spots. The inaccessible areas were monitored visually by air and any flare-ups are being cooled off with helicopter water bucket drops.
Current Resources: 3 20-person crews, 3 engines, two dozers, one water tender, and two helicopters. Total personnel: 285.
Today’s Activities: Crews are warned to watch for passage of storm cells that can cause erratic winds and consequently extreme fire behavior. Crews will focus on improving mop-up activities on the fire, running grids & taking direct suppression actions where terrain and fire behavior allow.
Restrictions/Closures: The recent ‘Closure Order’ by the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forests has been revised starting June 29, 2013. The revision opens the Big Cimarron Road #858 to the Silver Jack reservoir to the junction of Big Cimarron Road #863 and service road #858, the West Fork Road #860 south of Owl Creek Pass; and Road #868 from the Alpine Guard Station to the Big Blue trailhead #232. All the other prohibited uses of National Forest System lands (Restricted Area), roads and trails that access the East Fork Fire area are still in effect.
A road “Closure Order” for the BLM’s adjacent spur roads has been issued. The closure includes the High Mesa Road (3001) and spurs roads (3001a-i) off that road. It also includes the High Mesa Trail, and the Big Blue Ridge Road (3006) and the spur/branch roads (3006b-c) off that road. Please contact: Gunnison Field Office for more information at 970-642-4940.
On June 24, 2013, the Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forest implemented Stage 1 fire restrictions due to high fire danger and ongoing fire activity. The prohibitions relate to campfires and smoking on National Forest System lands in the area. In addition, a temporary flight restriction (TFR) is in effect surrounding the East Fork Fire area. Please remember fire-works are never allowed on Forest Service lands!
For more on the closures and restrictions please go to the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forest website (www.fs.usda.gov/gmug).
The Colorado Trail and the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail are closed from Stoney Pass to San Luis Peak due to fire activity on the Papoose Fire located in Mineral County.
For Wildfire information on how to protect your home and family go to: www.firewise.org
If anyone wants to help or thank firefighters, contributions can be made to:
National Wildland Firefighters Foundation which provides support for the families of injured firefighters:
For further Fire Information, visit: www.inciweb.org; Select “East Fork Fire”
East Fork Fire email address: email@example.com
Or call the Forest fire hotline 970-874-6602.