Rough Fire Grows to 55,000 Acres But Is Also 21 Percent Contained

Staff Writer

The Rough Fire continues to grow but firefighters are beginning to get some control over the fire, with the fire now at about 21 percent contained.

Here's the latest update from the fire command post as of this morning, Aug. 26:

Containment of the Rough Fire has been established along the Middle Fork of Kings River to the corner of the confluence with the North Fork including the area around Balch Camp. The fire was active north of Highway 180 and west of Junction Vista Point. Sustained crown runs occurred from the canyon bottoms to ridgetops. Crews are engaged in perimeter control connecting fire lines down to Kings River and from Cherry Gap to McKenzie Ridge. Today, air resources will continue to be utilized in this area. Fire crews are coordinating closely with agency resource advisors to protect natural and cultural resources at risk in Converse Basin. Approximately 12,000 feet of hose has been placed to protect the Boole Tree, Chicago Stump and sensitive wildlife habitats in that area.

The fire continues to burn east into Boulder Creek Drainage threatening Lockwood, Evans and Kennedy Groves. Structural protection efforts have been made to Boyden Cavern gift shop by removing dead vegetation and application of fire retardant gel. Crews are continuing to prep structures and improve contingency lines along road 14S02 towards Quail Flat. They will also scout for opportunities to establish contingency lines east of Quail Flat towards the Sheep Burn area. Wind-blown embers, flames burning through tree canopies and burning logs rolling downslope can cause patches of fire to jump ahead of the flame front. “Spotting” can occur between a few feet up to a mile ahead of the main fire and continue to be a problem in the canyons, challenging firefighters to maintain containment lines.

There will be a community meeting regarding the Rough Fire tonight at 6:30 p.m. at Dunlap School, 39667; Dunlap Rd. Dunlap, CA 93621. The meeting will be hosted by California Interagency Incident Management Team 3. Incident Commander Mark von Tillow will discuss the current fire situation and the operational plan for the Rough Fire. There will also be remarks by the local fire and law enforcement authorities, Sierra and Sequoia National Forests, Giant Sequoia National Monument and Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks representatives.

An open forum for questions from the public will follow.

Closures & Advisories:

· Sierra National Forest issued a closure order for the Rough Fire area.

· The Hume Lake Ranger District, Jenny Lakes Wilderness and Monarch Wilderness, including Forest Road 12S01, 12S01E, and 12S19 in the Sequoia Highlands area of the Sequoia National Forest remain closed.

· McKinley Grove Rd. (11S40) is closed at Wishon Dam, including the 11S07.

· 10S24 is closed from the intersection of 11S91 to where it meets 11S40 at Buck Meadow.

· 11S12 Rd. (Salt Flat Rd.) is closed at McKinley Grove Rd.

· Trimmer Springs Road at Kirch Flat.

Open

· Parts of the Grant Grove and Wilsonia areas of Kings Canyon National Park are now open. The General Grant Tree, Panoramic Point, John Muir Lodge, Grant Grove Cabins, Visitor Center, park trails, restaurant, market and gift shop are now open to residents and visitors.

Please see InciWeb for more specific details.

Fire Size Today: 55,900 acres

Containment: 21%

2152 Firefighters: 24 crews, 153 engines and 11 helicopters

Location: Kings River Drainage, 5 miles North of Hume Lake and 2.5 miles southwest of Spanish Mountain. Fire is being managed on the Sierra National Forest, Sequoia National Forest, and Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks.

Started: 7/31/15 lightning caused

Management: California Interagency Incident Management Team 3 (CIIMT3) and South Central Sierra Interagency Incident Management Team.

Fire Restrictions: are in place for the Sierra National Forest. Campfires are only allowed in designated developed recreation sites. No campfires are allowed within the Sequoia National Forest and Giant Sequoia National Monument.

Incident Information: http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4456/

Twitter: @Sierra_NF @SequoiaForest @SequoiaKingsNPS

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