Gold Pan Complex Fact Sheet - August 30, 2013
Incident: Gold Pan Complex Wildfire
Start Date: July 16, 2013 Containment: 0%
Cause: Lightning Location: 35 miles SW of Conner, MT
Current Size: Approximately 39,549 acres (Gold Pan – 38,317; Nez Peak –1,220)
Resources Assigned: Resources on the fire include 16 engines, 3 helicopters, 2 20-person crews, 5 water tenders, and heavy equipment (skidder, chippers, a large articulating brush cutter and feller-buncher) (approximately 242 personnel).
Current Status: Rain was received on the fire Thursday. As the storm approached, the wind increased causing the fire behavior to increase along the north and east edges. The rains that followed fell on those same areas limiting the fire’s spread. Firefighters are close to completing the tasks they have been assigned. Nez Peak was moderately active today with the same wind/rain scenario. We assisted the Bitterroot National Forest again with initial attack forces. Goat and Thirteen fires remain in monitor status.
Planned Actions: Today crews will finalize the containment lines, brush clearing, chipping and snagging. The snag removal along Magruder road will continue, as snags continue to fall. Helicopters with buckets will be used on the leading edge of the fire in the Blue Joint drainage as well as other active areas to reduce the spread of the fire, as long as conditions allow. A couple engines will be on the east side of the fire assisting with the work.
A Type III Incident Management Team will be shadowing the Type I team today and tomorrow. They will assume command of the fire on Sunday morning. The Fire Information sign at the Junction of Nez Perce and West Fork Roads will remain in place, as will the information board at the West Fork Ranger District Office. All others will be removed on Saturday morning. Daily updates will continue to be sent out to the Email list and posted on InciWeb when conditions warrant.
The Gold Pan Complex is a long term event and will likely be contained when a season ending event occurs. This determination comes from several factors: the ability to provide for safety of firefighters, the lack of moisture in the fuels, the dead trees throughout, the topography in many areas and the lack of measureable precipitation, as well as, its location within the wilderness boundary.
Closures: The road closure order was adjusted Monday, August 26, on the southern boundary of Closure Area B to allow public access to Deer Creek trail #139. See InciWeb and the Bitterroot National Forest Website for up-to-date Forest Closure map for specifics.
Weather: Today higher temperatures and lower humidities are expected. If storms pass through the area they will likely bring some higher gusts of wind which could increase the fire’s spread.
Cooperating Agencies: Ravalli County Fire Warden, Painted Rocks RFD, West Fork RFD, Ravalli County Sheriffs Dept., Ravalli County Office of Emergency Management, and the American Red Cross.
A live web cam is available for viewing if you open the Bitterroot Forest Web Page. Click on the Quick links (right below the Smokey Bear image) you can choose between the two cameras. http://www.fs.usda.gov/bitterroot/ The photo updates every 15 minutes or so. Fire information is also available there as well as on Inciweb: www.inciweb.org .