Yellowstone Fire Update: August 28, 2011
National Park Service
Yellowstone National Park
Heart Complex Update: August 28, 2011 - 2:00 p.m.
A small lightning caused fire was discovered Saturday afternoon in the southwest corner of Yellowstone National Park. This brings to seven the number of small wildland fires currently burning since August 25 in the park's backcountry.
The half-acre Ouzel Fire is located in the southwest corner of the park 17 miles southwest of Old Faithful and five miles east of the Caribou-Targhee National Forest boundary. The fire is burning on the ground with occasional single tree torching, and is suspected to be the fire Yellowstone fire crews had previously been unable to locate for the past two days. Because of its proximity to the Three Rivers patrol cabin, structural protection measures will be readied in the event of increased fire activity.
The Ouzel Fire will be managed as part of the Heart Complex, a series of small lightning caused fires burning in the backcountry areas of the park with varying degrees of behavior and growth potential. All but one of these fires are less than an acre in size, and all are being managed to allow natural processes to occur to enhance the area's natural resources, to protect people and property, and to effectively use available firefighting resources.
Heart Fire. 0.1 acres, burning a half mile north of Heart Lake in the south central portion of the park.
Sour Fire. 0.1 acres, burning east of Canyon Village on the Mirror Plateau.
Point Fire. 0.1 acres, burning on the eastern shore of Yellowstone Lake.
Huckleberry Fire. 0.1 acres, burning two miles from the southern boundary of the park.
Gibbon Fire. 14 acres, burning three miles southeast of Madison Junction.
The Prospect Fire was suppressed yesterday using three Yellowstone wildland firefighters supported by helicopter bucket work because of its proximity to Tower Fall store and campground. It is currently in controlled status.
Other than limited temporary closures of some backcountry campsites and hiking trails, all park entrances, roads and services are open. None of these fires pose a threat to park visitors.
The fire danger rating in Yellowstone is currently "Very High." Visitors are encouraged to be careful with campfires, grills, camp stoves and smoking materials. There have been 15 fires reported in Yellowstone this year.
The latest information on backcountry access is available by contacting Backcountry Offices throughout the park or by calling 307-344-2160 during normal business hours, seven days a week. When actively burning, smoke from any of these fires may be visible from park roadways. Updated information is available 24-hours a day by calling 307-344-2580, or on the web at http://www.inciweb.org/unit/5382/.
- 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.