Big Windy Complex Evening Update
Incident: Big Windy Complex Wildfire
Fire Information Update
Thursday, August 1, 2013 - 9:00 PM PDT
Complex: Big Windy
Size: 3,718 Acres
News & Highlights for the Big Windy Complex:
-The BLM portion of the Wild Section of the Rogue River is still closed from Grave Creek to Mule Creek due to extreme fire conditions and public health and safety issues.
-The Recreation section of the Wild and Scenic Rogue River is open to rafters. However, the Grave Creek takeout is closed and law enforcement officials will not allow traffic into Grave Creek. Rafters floating on this section of the river should use the Argo, Almeda, or Rand river exits.
-Firefighters completed preparations around the Black Bar Lodge and the Zane Grey Cabin along the Rogue River.
-In support of an indirect strategy, firefighters constructed ½ mile of dozer line on the west flank and ½ mile of hand line on the east flank in difficult terrain. Additional roads were opened and brush was cleared along roadways.
-While building fireline today, firefighters engaged the Big Windy Fire along Bear Camp Road and initiated small burn out operations to keep the fire below the road.
-Firefighters are in place near Horseshoe Bend on the Rogue River tonight to watch overnight for any spot fires on the north side of the river.
Big Windy Complex Operations Summary:
Additional resources and heavy equipment continued to arrive over the last 24 hours. Today, there were 4 Hot Shot crews, 9 type II hand crews, 7 dozers, and 9 engines working on the fire.
Spotting activity from the Jenny fire has been observed up to 1/3 of mile from the main fire perimeter. Concern remains that spot fires may cross the river in the Horseshoe Bend area. The fire currently remains south of the Rogue River.
Air Operations: The inversion lifted enough that a fixed-wing aircraft and a helicopter were able to be used for limited reconnaissance today.
Closures in Place:
-The Bear Camp Road is officially closed with closure orders and maps issued by the Medford District of the Bureau of Land Management/Grants Pass Interagency Office and the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest/Gold Beach Ranger District. See websites above for additional information. The Josephine County Sheriff’s Office and the Curry County Sheriff’s Office are providing staffing at the closure points and signs are in place.
-Rogue River Trail from Grave Creek to Rogue River Ranch.
-The BLM portion of the Wild Section of the Rogue River is closed from Grave Creek to Mule Creek due to extreme fire conditions and public health and safety issues.
Big Windy Complex: Consists of the Big Windy (Josephine County), Calvert Peak and Jenny Fires (Curry County). Located on Medford District Bureau of Land Management lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry Started: July 26, 2013 at 3:00 a.m. Cause: Lightning Location: Approximately 8 miles NW of Galice. The north part of the fire is within two miles of Winkle Bar on the Rogue River.
VALUES AT RISK: Boaters and campers on the Rogue River, Wild and Scenic River below Grave Creek, economic considerations associated with recreation, Black Bar Lodge (18 structures), Zane Grey Historical Cabin, Marial Lodge, Rogue River Ranch, cultural resources, threatened & endangered species habitat, late successional reserves, fisheries and wildlife.
WEATHER: Partly Cloudy in the evening, becoming mostly cloudy. A low temperature of 57 is predicted with RH increasing to 72% overnight. Winds N 2-4 mph changing to N-NE 0-2 mph.
FIRE BEHAVIOR: Last night’s infrared flight was hampered by thick smoke over the area and information on the fires in the complex was not available. An IR flight is scheduled overnight in the hopes that smoke has dissipated enough to allow for accurate imagery. Previous IR flights have shown growth overnight on the fires, and growth is expected again tonight.
SAFETY CONCERNS: Steep and unforgiving terrain, mixing of fire and public traffic (particularly on one-lane roads), variable and unpredictable winds in the river corridor, inactive and active mine shafts, ticks, hazard trees, poison oak, poor air quality, aviation operations, extreme fire behavior, and railroad crossings.
COOPERATING AGENCIES & PARTNERS: Oregon Department of Forestry, Medford District Bureau of Land Management, Josephine County, Curry County, Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest, Jackson County.