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Yellowstone National Park Fire Update - August 18, 2013 @ 10:00 a.m.

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Date: August 18, 2013

National Park Service
U.S. Department of the Interior

Yellowstone National Park
P.O. Box 168
Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190
August 17, 2013             13-063F   

Al Nash or Dan Hottle
(307) 344-2015


August 18, 2013 – 10:00 a.m.

Summary: Hot, dry and windy conditions prompted significant growth on three fires burning in Yellowstone National Park on Saturday, producing smoke columns visible from many locations across the park. In addition, drift smoke from fires in Southwestern Montana and Idaho is contributing to hazy, smoky conditions especially in the early morning and evening. Fire managers continue to focus on providing for public and firefighter safety, and for the protection of structures, communities and natural and historic resources.


Alum Fire: This lightning caused fire was discovered Wednesday morning, August 14, burning in the backcountry west of Mud Volcano near Alum Creek. The fire had remained fairly quiet for several days and had grown only to 3 acres as of Saturday morning. However, as critical fire weather conditions developed early Saturday afternoon the fire sprang to life. Extreme fire behavior was observed including short periods where the fire advanced through the crowns of the mature lodgepole pine forest. The fire advanced at least six miles to the east-northeast in the span of a few hours. The head of the fire is within a mile of the Grand Loop Road near Mud Volcano. The Alum Fire is now estimated at 3,000 acres. Additional firefighting resources are on their way to the park to assist with protection of the road corridor, the boardwalk in the Mud Volcano, and the nearby power line. There is the potential for temporary closures of the road between Canyon Village and Fishing Bridge Junction.

Alder Fire: This fire on a peninsula at the south end of Yellowstone Lake experienced significant fire activity again Saturday, doubling in size from 450 acres to an estimated 900 acres as it burned in heavy timber and produced a tall smoke column visible all around the lake. The fire is hemmed in by water on three sides and by a recently burned area to the south. Several backcountry campsites on The Promontory have been temporarily closed. This fire was discovered on August 14th and was caused by lightning.

Druid Fire: Gusty winds, low humidity and hot temperatures resulted in active fire behavior on the Druid Fire Saturday, which is burning in a steep heavily timbered bowl in the backcountry high above the Northeast Entrance Road on Druid Peak. The fire grew from 30 to 60 acres on Saturday, and at times some smoke and flames were visible from along the road.

Other Fires: The Passage Fire was discovered Thursday at the south end of Yellowstone Lake. This lightning caused fire remains quiet and is just 1/10th of an acre. Some smoke was seen on the Snake Fire, located three miles east of the South Entrance along the boundary with the Bridger-Teton National Forest. It remains estimated at 200 acres. At times some of the park fires are visible on the Mount Washburn Fire Lookout Web Cams http://www.nps.gov/yell/photosmultimedia/webcams.htm.

Weather: Sunday is forecast to be nearly as hot, dry, and windy as Saturday. These weather conditions will cause all three of the park’s large fires to become active and grow again by early afternoon.

Impacts to visitors and area residents: All roads leading into and through the park and the surrounding forest and all campgrounds, lodging, stores, and visitor services are open. These fires are not a threat to visitors or area residents. Updated park road information is available 24-hours a day by calling 307-344-2117.

Additional information: Maps, photos, and update information can be found on the web at http://www.inciweb.org/unit/5382/. You can also follow us on Twitter @YellowstoneNPS. The next fire update will be prepared and distributed by Noon Monday, August 19.

- www.nps.gov/yell -

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