Antelope Fire Update 9/24/2010 10:30 am
Contact: Al Nash, 307-344-2015
Yellowstone National Park Fire Update
September 24, 2010 10:30 a.m.
Reported: Tuesday afternoon, September 14, 2010
Location: Southeast of Tower Fall and west of the Yellowstone River
Current Size: Approximately 3048 acres – 30 percent contained
Overview: The Antelope Fire was discovered Tuesday afternoon,
September 14th near the Mount Washburn Fire Lookout. A lightning
strike started the fire in an area of sage and grass on the northeast
slope of Mount Washburn, between Antelope Creek and the Yellowstone
River. The fire has spread through an area burned in the 1988 North
Fork Fire, where the fuels include lodgepole pine, tall dry grass and
abundant downed logs.
Thursday’s Activities: There was very minimal fire activity, with the
exception of a pocket of lodgepole regeneration located in the far
southeast corner. Very little burning continues in the fire’s
interior. Helicopter bucket drops were used to cool the south flank
of the fire, followed by small burnouts to contain its spread. By
Thursday evening, only the southeast corner of the fire was actively
The road between the Tower Fall Store and Chittenden Road (Mt.
Washburn Lookout road) is still closed due to morning and evening
smoke inversions and the safety of firefighters working in the area.
The Tower Store will close for the season at 12:00 noon today, Friday
Friday’s Weather Forecast: As the weekend approaches, warmer and
drier weather will move into the area, with highs in the 60’s during
the day and lows in the 30s at night. Winds from the west will pick
up in the afternoons, averaging 15 mph.
Friday’s Strategies: Fire crews and helicopters will be working to
contain the southeast corner of the fire. The remaining perimeter is
unlikely to show activity, but monitors and lookouts will be in place
during the burn period. Objectives call for full containment in the
next few days, utilizing minimum impact techniques such as wetting
down only the areas that are still smoking after the fire has burned
out along a natural barrier.
Park Impacts: Grand Loop Road between the Tower Falls Store and
Chittenden Road (the Mt. Washburn Lookout road) will remain closed to
visitors until further notice. No park entrances are closed. No
lodging, campgrounds, or other visitor facilities are closed.
The Antelope fire is helping Yellowstone National Park achieve its
fire and resource management goals. Yellowstone National Park is a
fire adapted ecosystem, and fire plays an important role in
maintaining the health of the area’s wildlife habitat and vegetation.
The Antelope Fire is being managed both to protect people and property
and to enhance the area’s natural resources by safely and effectively
using available firefighting resources. It is the largest of the 11
fires that have occurred in Yellowstone this year. The Antelope fire
has also provided a new fuels buffer that will increase the
defensibility of the Tower developments in the event of future fires
in the Mount Washburn area.
Updated Information: Updated road information is available 24 hours a
day by calling 307-344-2117. When actively burning, smoke from the
fire is visible along a large section of the Northeast Entrance road,
and several locations in the park. It can also be viewed on the Mt.
Washburn Fire Lookout Web Cam at
http://www.nps.gov/yell/photosmultimedia/webcams.htm. Fire updates are
available 24 hours a day by calling 307-344-2580, or on the web at
Did You Know?
At peak summer levels, 3,500 employees work for Yellowstone National Park concessioners and about 800 work for the National Park Service.