Sept. 7 Grizzly Creek Fire update: Red Flag warning in effect until 9 p.m.; fire remains at 83% contained
The Grizzly Creek Fire “largely behaved” over the weekend despite dry, hot weather throughout the region.
“At 83% containment, the fire has not grown for more than a week and has yet to challenge containment lines, even in the two most problematic areas – the Grizzly Creek drainage on the northwest corner of the fire and the Cinnamon and Devil’s Hole creek drainages to the south,” A Monday update from the Alaska Incident Management Team reports.
“There are about 8 miles of uncontained line in each of those spots but the fire has stalled out in both directions, despite two major wind events last week and the recent spate of hot, dry weather.”
The Grizzly Creek Fire began Aug. 10 and is currently 32,464 acres in size. 402 people are currently involved in firefighting efforts on the blaze, and a smaller Type 3 incident management team is slated to take over leading operations on Wednesday.
Monday will continue to see prime fire conditions, but Tuesday’s forecasted dramatic drop in temperatures will help firefighters in their efforts.
“Before that happens, though, firefighters must persevere one more day as they await the U-Turn in the weather,” the update states.
Cold weather brings its own variety of risks, including dangerous driving, working and living conditions.
“If conditions get bad enough, firefighters could be pulled off the line for their safety,” the update reports.
Officials said Monday afternoon the “influx of smoke in the area is not a result of increased fire activity at the #GrizzlyCreekFire. A change in wind direction associated with the incoming cold front is bringing smoke from fires in states to the west of Colorado, namely Utah and California.”
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“There are parts of (Grizzly Creek Fire) that got 8 inches of snow in the recent weeks, but we still have activity on warm days,” a Forest Service spokesman said. “We’ll probably need some kind of season-ending weather event, like a big rain or snow to put it completely out.”