Three new small fires were discovered in Yellowstone late Tuesday. Continued impacts from hot, dry weather prompted the park to raise the fire danger to Extreme on Wednesday afternoon. Fire restrictions also went into effect at noon Wednesday.
Fan 1 and Fan 2 Fires:
The West Yellowstone Smokejumper aircraft spotted two small fires from the air late Tuesday in the northwest corner of the park, a mile southwest of High Lake. Four heli-rappellers from the Gallatin National Forest were inserted Tuesday evening to suppress the lightning caused fires. The 22-person Blue Ridge Interagency Hotshot crew from Arizona has arrived to continue suppression efforts. The combined fires are estimated at 2 acres with 25 percent containment.
This lightning caused fire was also discovered Tuesday. Is its burning in the backcountry southeast of Tower Junction, on the east side of the Yellowstone River. Firefighters are monitoring this fire, which is being allowed to play its natural role in the ecosystem. It is currently estimated at one-tenth of an acre. Backcountry campsite 2Y1 is temporarily closed due to the fire.
This lightning caused fire, burning in the backcountry nine miles southeast of Canyon, was discovered on July 29. As a precaution, an area around the fire including some backcountry campsites and trail segments are temporarily closed. Details are available at any park Visitor Center or Backcountry Office, or online at http://go.usa.gov/GAD. An estimated 25 acres, this is the largest active fire in the park.
Other Fires and Smoke:
Firefighters are also monitoring the Range, Camera, and Dewdrop 2 fires. All have shown little recent activity and are all less than one acre. While each of the park’s fires may produce a smoke column visible from some roads or trails when actively burning, most of the smoke present in the region is due to fires burning south and west of Yellowstone, and not from the small fires in the park.
Campfires are allowed only in established fire grates or fire rings in picnic areas or campgrounds. The use of portable charcoal grills is prohibited. Any fire which can produce an ash is prohibited in the backcountry. You can use portable stoves and lanterns which use propane, white gas, kerosene, or jellied petroleum for fuel anywhere in the park. Smoking is prohibited along all trails and anywhere in the backcountry. Smoking is allowed in vehicles and along roads, near buildings, and in developed campgrounds or picnic areas if you are standing in an area at least three feet in diameter where nothing on the ground will burn.
Impacts to visitors and area residents:
All park entrances, roads, campgrounds, lodging, stores, and other visitor services are open. A few trail segments and some backcountry campsites are temporarily closed.
There is a Fire Weather Watch for Thursday afternoon and evening for Yellowstone National Park. Continued hot, dry conditions with a chance of isolated thunderstorms are forecast through early next week.
YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK FIRE UPDATE