4/18/2014

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Manastash Ridge Fire holds at 40 percent containment

Manastash Ridge Fire holds at 40 percent containment
Photo courtesy: WIMT
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INCIDENT MANAGEMENT UPDATE -- Smoke is visible within the fire perimeter Sunday as clear skies, warmer temperatures and lower humidities return to the fire area. The smokes were located mostly in deep duff in riparian zones and areas of dense canopy cover where the weekend’s precipitation did not reach the ground.  Warmer, drier weather is forecast for the remainder of the week.
 
Crews spent much of Sunday picking up hose lays, pumps and other miscellaneous equipment that was deployed during initial attack and long term suppression, as well as mopping up smokes as they occurred. In one case, hazards in the post fire environment was well demonstrated when a pump was found buried in a mud slide that resulted from heavy precipitation falling on an area where fire intensity was severe. In this case, the fire was so intense that all organic material was consumed, leaving only hydrophobic soil, or soil that will not absorb water.
 
The 2,352 acre fire is now at 40% containment. Although containment lines are constructed, and some are being rehabbed, the fire perimeter has not reached the lines on the northern and eastern flanks. Due to the forecast warmer temperatures and hazards presented by unburned vegetation and snags, the area remains unsafe for public entry.
 
Area trail and road closures in the vicinity of the fire remain in place to protect firefighter and public safety. These closures are being evaluated daily and will likely be relaxed mid-week. The number one objective of this fire is to keep the public and firefighters safe. Details of the closure boundaries, lists of closed roads and trails, and relevant maps are available on the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forests website. Only firefighters, Forest Service or other agency personnel, and law enforcement are allowed access to closure areas.
 
Fire danger remains high. Please check the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forests website for current campfire restrictions.

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