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    Denali

    National Park & Preserve Alaska

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Two new lightning-ignited wildfires north of Kantishna

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Date: June 23, 2013
Contact: Kris Fister, 907-683-9583

DENALI PARK, Alaska: Two lightning-ignited wildfires were reported north of KantishnaDenali National Park and Preserve on Saturday, June 22. The Bear Creek Fire, which yesterday was estimated to be approximately six acres in size, is located fifteen miles northwest of Kantishna and three miles west of Moose Creek.It is burning in an area that burned in 1993, and was 80 percent active and creeping in black spruce. The Moving River Fire is 29 miles northwest of Kantishna on the south side of the Kantishna River. It is also on the north side of an old Kantishna River channel, a natural fire break. When observed the fire was five acres in size, 20 percent active and creeping in black spruce and tundra. Action will be taken if either fire threatens structures, natural or cultural sites - none are threatened at this time. The Alaska Fire Service will monitor the fire from the air and document fire behavior and growth.

Weather forecasts indicate temperatures will likely be hot and dry for much of the state next week. During this period of significant fire danger, Denali staff are patrolling the park campgrounds ensuring that campfires are attended at all times. Information about wildfire prevention and the potential of drifting smoke is also available at the visitor centers. Denali fire staff encourages park visitors to be extra cautious with anything that could start a wildfire. Fires are not allowed in the park's backcountry areas and fireworks are prohibited. Everyone has a hand in a safe wildfire season.

Currently more than 70 wildfires are active in the state including some in or near national parks. Where there is fire, there is smoke. Due to the current and expected statewide fire activity, anticipate varying levels of smoke. Keep informed of local fire information and air quality reports. Wildfire smoke information is available at http://www.dec.state.ak.us.air/smokemain.htm. Visit http://fire.ak.blm.gov for statewide information and a map of the active fires.

Visit http://www.nps.gov/dena/parkmgmt/currentfireinfo.htmfor current fire information, a map and a link to photos.

Did You Know?

an arctic ground squirrel on its hind legs

Nearly 500 vegetation plots have been installed in Denali, to monitor climate change. Warmer temperatures allow woody plants to grow at higher elevations, invading the fragile and unique plants already in high alpine tundra - and threatening the animals that depend on those specialized plants.