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Utah-Wildfire Update

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  • Utah-Wildfire Update

    Bulldog fire surpasses 33,000 acres

    Blaze razes 2 cabins, threatens 11 structures
    By Joseph M. Dougherty and Laura Hancock
    Deseret Morning News

    At 33,080 acres, the Bulldog fire in southeast Utah is the largest blaze this season in the state.

    Two old mining cabins, built in 1910 and 1950, have been lost in the fire. They were used for recreation and were not occupied when they burned. Eleven other structures are threatened, BLM fire information officer Murray Shoemaker said.
    The fire is burning 14 miles north of Ticaboo, Garfield County, on mostly federal land. The structures are scattered apart. Crews are hustling to wrap them in heat-reflecting material. "Think of it as a giant roll of tin foil," Shoemaker said.
    Wildlife biologists are consulting with the BLM to minimize the fire's impact on herds of bison and mule deer in the fire area, Shoemaker said.
    Four helicopters dropping water over the fire are assisting the 347 firefighters and personnel. The fire was 30 percent contained Wednesday night; however, it continues to creep in size in areas that lack fire lines, BLM fire information officer Lisa Reid said.
    The fire is burning "scarily erratically," Shoemaker said.
    "To give you an idea, our fire behavior analyst . . . was looking around. He saw five big columns of smoke, and they're all burning in different directions, which is just unheard of. Generally the wind comes in and burns the fire in the same direction."
    Elsewhere in Utah, the Causey/Evergreen Fire, about 10 miles east of Pineview Reservoir, could be 100 percent controlled sometime today, said Wasatch-Cache spokeswoman Kathy Jo Pollock.
    Six trailers, one cabin and two outbuildings were destroyed. Residents were allowed to return to their houses about 6 p.m. Tuesday. Also, the fire was 100 percent contained Tuesday night. Investigators determined the 486-acre fire was caused by a track on a backhoe.
    Most crews on the South Marvine fire could be released today from the blaze after finishing mop-up work 15 miles north of Loa. The fire burned 326 acres and is 100 percent contained. Management of the few remaining hot spots will be turned over to the Loa Fire District, spokeswoman Jill Ivie said. Fire officials ask the public to be careful in the area.

    At 1,935 acres, the fire in Farmington Canyon was 95 percent contained Wednesday night, fire information officer Lynn Barclay said.
    Several fire crews are expected to leave the scene today including the incident management team assigned to the situation, Barclay said. The Farmington Fire Department and the Wasatch-Cache National Forest will manage the fire with helicopter water drops.
    The fire burned in a "mosaic" pattern, skipping patches of vegetation as it marched up toward the ridge line. Flames are expected to jump to those unburned spots, which will generate heavy smoke over the mountains. Fire managers don't know when the fire will burn itself out, Barclay said.
    The Lonesome Beaver fire, 20 miles southwest of Hanksville, was controlled last month. It continues to burn itself out. The 4,522-acre blaze was sparked by lightning May 30.
    The Woodenshoe fire, at 2,710 acres, is 100 percent contained. It was sparked June 28 by an abandoned campfire.
    There is a new fire restriction in the Uinta National Forest beginning today and will last indefinitely.
    Campfires outside of U.S. Forest Service-approved fire pits and grills and designated campgrounds and picnic areas are prohibited. There is to be no smoking except in an enclosed vehicle, building or developed recreation site. All incendiary devices like fireworks and tracer ammunition are always prohibited on federal lands.
    The Forest Service wants visitors to be cautious when building and maintaining campfires, which should never be left unattended.

    Front line since 1983 and still going strong

  • #2
    Utah update

    327 firefighters toiling to contain huge Bullfrog fire

    Containment is near 100% in 5 other Utah blazes
    By Laura Hancock
    Deseret Morning News

    Although most the wildfires throughout the state are dwindling to a smolder, the 327 firefighters and personnel at the Bulldog fire continue battling a large and unpredictable blaze in the Henry Mountains.

    The 31,657-acre fire was 40 percent contained Thursday night. It's located 14 miles north of Ticaboo, Garfield County, BLM spokeswoman Lisa Reid said. Sparks from an all-terrain vehicle sparked dry grass on July 8. The fire quickly spread.
    Two old mining cabins were lost in the fire last week. Two cabins and two houses remained threatened Thursday night. They are located in the rural Gold Creek and Cat Ranch subdivisions, Reid said.
    There is no estimated date of full containment because the terrain is rough, which makes the fire unpredictable, Reid said.
    But an overcast sky Thursday helped crews. "When there's no cloud cover, it allows for full heat," Reid said.
    Crews hail from Jackson, Miss., Oregon, Logan, Utah County, Cedar City, Richfield and Fillmore, Reid said.
    In addition to the nine crews on scene is a "camp crew," which specifically accommodates the needs of the firefighters — an operation in itself, Reid said.
    Firefighters work 12- to 16-hour shifts and sleep in tents near the fire scene or behind the BLM office in Hanksville, Reid said.
    They travel to Hanksville every three or four days to shower in an 18-wheel semi with 30 spigots. A caterer provides three meals each day. "Each meal is 2,000 calories," said Reid. "They (have) to eat it because they burn it off."
    Elsewhere throughout Utah, about 25 Farmington and Fruit Heights residents met at Davis High School Thursday night to receive an update on the fire burning around Farmington Canyon that initially threatened some homes. No homes were lost and none are threatened, but the residents were told Thursday to trim vegetation to help prevent this and future fires from attacking their houses, Wasatch-Cache National Forest spokeswoman Kathy Jo Pollock said.

    The Farmington Canyon fire is 95 percent contained. There is no estimated control date. Crews cannot reach the ridge to complete the fire line because of 20- to 30- foot brush. "I think we're going to see smoke for at least a month," Pollock said.
    The Causey-Evergreen fire, about 10 miles east of the Pineview Reservoir, was 100 percent contained and controlled Thursday evening, Pollock said. Six trailers, one cabin and two outbuildings were destroyed by the 486-acre blaze.
    The South Marvine fire, 15 miles north of Loa, Wayne County, is contained. Crews have left the scene and local firefighters from the Loa Fire District will finish mopping up, a statement said. The fire burned 326 acres.
    The Lonesome Beaver fire, 20 miles southwest of Hanksville, was controlled last month. It continues to burn itself out. The 4,522-acre blaze was sparked by lightning May 30.
    The Woodenshoe fire, at 2,710 acres, is 100 percent contained. It was sparked June 28 by an abandoned campfire.

    Front line since 1983 and still going strong


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