Mills Canyon, Chiwaukum, Kelly Mt, & Duncan Fire Update July 19, 2014 ^NH

Suppression on these fires is an interagency effort, including Chelan County Fire Districts 1, 3, 8 and 9; Washington DNR; Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, and the Bureau of Land Management.
Yesterday
Mills Canyon:  Firefighters assigned to Mills Canyon worked to strengthen containment lines and mop-up.  They responded to a flare-up within the perimeter on the east side of the fire near Keystone Canyon in the afternoon.  Evacuation levels were lifted for all but three residences in Swakane Canyon.
Chiwaukum Creek Fire:  Crews had a good day yesterday.  Progress was made along the north end of the fire.  Air support was important to hanging on to the work that has been done.  Firefighters identified an opportunity to go more direct in division AA on the north end; continuing to push that line down toward the Highway.  The fire was active last night at the south end along highway; spotting and catching in heavy fuels.  It burned well into the night but stayed west of the Highway.  Firefighters remain vigilant looking for spots across the Highway.  They did find and extinguish one shovel size spot.  Structure protection groups are in place and state mobilization resources are supporting structure protection efforts.  Containment efforts along Highway 2 allowed reduction of some Level 3 evacuations to Level 2.
Kelly Mountain Fire: Additional firefighters were inserted to help with suppression efforts.  The fire was active late in the afternoon.  It grew 30-40 acres in a long finger that spotted out toward the southeast.  Crews have a good anchor point with the work they’ve done so far and will continue to work toward containment.
Duncan Fire: PNW Team 3 was assigned responsibility for Duncan Fire on Friday.  They flew the Kelly Mountain and Duncan fire’s yesterday to gain information necessary for developing a strategy.  The fire is about 890 acres burning toward the old Pyramid burn.  While green meadows nearby may help keep the fire in check, it is burning in beetle killed subalpine fir.  It is on the ridge with fingers of fire headed down off the ridgeline.
Last night’s community information briefing in Plain was well attended.  Fire officials shared operational details for the fires.
Weather
Wind blew throughout the night.  Today, another weak cold front will move through the area.  Temperatures are expected to cool another few degrees and relative humidity will be up a little.  Winds should be mainly westerly, with gusts to 30 miles per hour.
Today’s Operations
The safety of firefighters and the public remains the highest priority.  PNW Team 3 is continually evaluating operations and activity amongst the fires they are managing and supporting neighboring incidents as appropriate.
Mills Canyon Fire: Infra Red flights show that Mills Canyon Fire still has hot spots that need to be mopped-up along the perimeter.  Firefighters are seeking out and extinguishing those heat sources that could threaten containment lines.  Rehabilitation work is underway on portions of the fire area where it is safe to do so.
Chiwaukum Creek Fire:  The focus remains in along the north/northwest perimenter and along Highway 2.  Firefighters will provide structure protection along the highway and keep working to establish contingency lines.  Structure protection resources are positioned to the east in the Ponderosa Sub-Division and River Road as a precaution.
Kelly Mountain Fire:  Firefighters will work to contain the fire; taking advantage of natural barriers on two sides.
Duncan Fire:  Firefighters should expect torching, spotting and rolling fire behavior in the subalpine fir.  Structure protection efforts will include sprinkler systems and wrapping buildings.
Evacuations Information
Evacuations and closures are dynamic.  They change throughout the day as fires move or as suppression efforts succeed in lessening the threat.  Chelan County Emergency Services has facebook and twitter sites where they post pertinent closure and evacuation information.  For the most current closure or evacuation information, please check their site at www.facebook.com/pages/Chelan-County-Emergency-Management/188543097925415 or follow them on twitter @ChelanCountyEM.  Links to those sites and other helpful fire information is available on InciWeb at http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/3937/.
Highway 2 is closed at the time of this update.  Current State Highway Closure information is available on their twitter feed @wsdot.
Shelters
Red Cross has a shelter at the Baptist Church in Leavenworth and a large animal shelter at the Chelan County Fairgrounds.
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