August 19, 2010
Trail closures and advisories are changing in
the Chiwawa and White River drainages located in the Wenatchee River Ranger
District of the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest.
Five fires resulted in the past two weeks as an outcome of several severe
lightning storms. Today, trail closures are being lifted for the Chiwawa
drainage, as all three fires (Finner, Schaefer, and McCall Mt. Fires) are
either declared out or fully contained with no smoke or fire activity
Trail closures are lifted for the Chiwawa drainage. Now open are:
Basalt Ridge and Pass Trails, Minnow Creek Trail, Rock Creek Tie
Trail, and the Chikamin Road.
Two wilderness fires in the White River drainage and Glacier Peak
Wilderness continue to burn.
The Ibex Fire, located 10 miles northwest of Lake Wenatchee, is
approximately 35 acres in size. The fire had some minor activity over the
past 24-hours, but conditions remained stable.
For public safety, Mt. David Trail (FS Trail #1521) remains closed
because of trail proximity to the fire.
The Thunder Basin Fire is located in a very remote section of the Glacier
Peak Wilderness, close to the headwaters of the White River, approximately
15 miles northwest of Lake Wenatchee. This fire remains between 75-100
acres in size.
The PCT Trail is not impacted by this fire. However, a travel advisory for
both White River Trail #1507 and Indian Creek Trail #1502 is in effect. An
advisory alerts people that there is wildfire in the vicinity and to be
aware of potential for changing conditions.
Both fires are managed under multiple objectives: firefighter and public
safety, protecting values at risk, and allowing fire to play its natural
role in the wilderness ecosystems.
Fire Managers evaluate the fuels and terrain within the fire areas and
assess risk daily. The extremely steep terrain poses high risk to
firefighter safety. The fires will remove vegetation (trees, brush and
herbaceous vegetation), but will also stimulate new growth and create
natural fire breaks for the future.
Varying amounts of smoke are visible from the Plain and Lake Wenatchee
communities from these fires. Most of the smoke presenting in the Wenatchee
Valley is drifting down from Canada.