Yellowstone Fire Update for August 17
Contact: Al Nash, 307-344-2010
National Park Service
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK NEWS RELEASE
Yellowstone Fire Update for Friday afternoon, August 17
Grouse Fire: This new lightning-caused fire was discovered Friday morning southeast of Heart Lake and 16 miles south-southeast of West Thumb Geyser Basin deep in the park’s backcountry. Contained at 1/10 of an acre.
Thistle Fire: Started by lightning Thursday afternoon, east of the Yellowstone River and 7 miles north-northeast of Fishing Bridge. Four smokejumpers assigned to the fire hiked out this afternoon. Contained at 1/10 of an acre.
Huckleberry Fire: The 40-acre fire located 10 miles east of the park’s South Entrance was started by lightning on August 8th. It is 100 percent contained and will be regularly patrolled.
Promontory Fire: This fire was started August 9 by three separate lightning strikes on The Promontory, a large peninsula at the south end of Yellowstone Lake. The three individual fires have merged together. Rain overnight and through the day have resulted in limited fire activity. It is being actively managed as a Wildland Fire Used For Resource Benefit, since it poses no threat to people or property. Estimated size is 1,100 acres.
Columbine Fire: The Columbine Fire is burning in Yellowstone National Park and the Shoshone National Forest south of the East Entrance road and U.S. Highway 14-16-20. Firefighters have been working to suppress and contain this lightning-caused fire since it was discovered on August 9th. Mark Grant’s Northern Rockies Type 2 Incident Management Team is directing the firefighting effort and is in charge of public information regarding the fire. Updates are available on the web at http://inciweb.org/incident/920/ or by phone at 307-344-2580.
Beaverdam Fire: This fire is located deep in the backcountry, east of the Southeast Arm of Yellowstone Lake and south of the Columbine Fire. The Beaverdam Fire was started by lightning on July 22. It is slowly advancing to the east-northeast. Rain has reduced fire activity today. The Beaverdam Fire is being actively managed as a Wildland Fire Used For Resource Benefit, since is poses no threat to people or property. It is estimated at 1,300 acres.
Owl Fire: This 2,800 acre lightning-caused fire was discovered July 20 in northwest corner of Yellowstone National Park east of U.S. Highway 191 and north of the Montana/Wyoming state line. On Tuesday afternoon firefighters discovered active fire within the containment line. The spot fire has been contained at 8 acres. Twelve smokejumpers assigned to the fire have been released. A 20-person Bureau of Land Management hand crew and a 5-person Yellowstone National Park trails crew remain assigned to the fire to mop up, patrol, and rehabilitate fire line.
None of the fires in the park pose a threat to visitors. Fifteen of the twenty fires which have occurred in the park this year have been started by lightning. Yellowstone averages twenty-two lightning caused fires a year. Fire restrictions have been in effect in Yellowstone National Park since July 3.
Yellowstone National Park aggressively works to suppress all human-caused fires and any naturally occurring fires when they threaten people or developed areas.
The East Entrance road reopened for travel at 9 o’clock this morning. All park entrances and roads are open to the public. All camping, lodging, restaurants, stores, service stations, and visitor centers inside the park are open. Updated Yellowstone National Park road information is available 24 hours a day by calling 307-344-2117.
Some backcountry trails and campsites near these fires are temporarily closed. Updated information is available all of the park’s Backcountry Offices or by calling 307-344-2160 during business hours. Firefighters working out of the Trail Creek Patrol Cabin are also providing fire information updates to hikers and stock users traveling along the south end of Yellowstone Lake.
- www.nps.gov/yell -
Did You Know?
The 1988 fires affected 793,880 acres or 36 percent of the park. Five fires burned into the park that year from adjacent public lands. The largest, the North Fork Fire, started from a discarded cigarette. It burned more than 410,000 acres.