USFS news releases

The Taboose Fire, located southwest of Big Pine and northwest of the community of Aberdeen, remains at 380 acres and 30% containment.


Photo courtesy of USFS

Last night, the fire was quiet and showed no growth. Today, crews will continue strengthening containment lines and mopping up hot spots.

A slight chance for thunderstorms remains in the forecast.

Taboose Creek Campground has re-opened. Birch Creek, Fish Springs and Aberdeen remain under pre-evacuation notifications and Tinnemaha Creek Campground is being used by crews for fire response.

The fire started the evening of September 4 at approximately 5,000 feet in elevation in sagebrush. The cause of the fire is under investigation. However, significant lightning was reported in the area.

Visitors to the Eastern Sierra are advised to avoid the fire area for their safety and to aid in a safe fire response.

Mop up is when firefighters extinguish or remove burning material near containment lines. It is the slow and tedious work of looking for smokes or hot spots. Crews drown, stir, drown (just like putting out a camp or warming fire) over many, many acres. Firefighters sometimes refer to mop up as making mud.



Incident Start Date: 7/26/2019 Cause: Lightning Size: 4,840 acres Containment: 98%
Incident Type: Suppression/Multiple Objectives Vegetation Type: Brush and timber
Agency: Inyo National Forest, U.S.D.A. Forest Service
Resources Assigned: Engines: 4 Crews: 4 Water Tenders: 1 Total Personnel: 149

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Current Situation: The weather is moving to a warming and drying period. Fire crews will be working throughout the fire area on suppression repair by rehabilitating fireline that is no longer needed. One aspect of thismethodical process is to reduce visual impacts to the land while also protecting it from future damage.

Firelines can appear to look like new trails for hiking, biking, or even OHV use; they are not! By bringing vegetation across lines and blending firelines into the landscape, the risk of them becoming social trails is greatly reduced.

Fire managers are also confirming additional safety plans for the fire’s operations to ensure minimum impact to the Mammoth Gran Fondo race this Saturday and the Tioga Pass Run on Sunday.

Firefighters are also supporting the area with response to any new wildfires reported, especially those in the vicinity of the Springs Fire.

Area Smoke Outlook: The latest daily air quality forecasts and site by site details can be found at
Road Closure Order: Forest Order No. 05-04-50-19-09 is in effect for some roads leading into the Springs Fire to provide for public and firefighter safety. See Exhibit B of the Forest Order for a description of the exact closure
area, or the provided closure map here:

Temporary Flight Restriction: A Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) is in place for the Springs Fire. Please go to the following link for more information. Remember, flying a drone near a fire is breaking the law.

Fire Prevention Message: Please remember, that one less spark means one less wildfire.
Online Fire Information: Inciweb:
Facebook: …



Incident Start Date: 07/25/2019 Cause: Lightning Size: 1,975 acres Containment: 30%
Incident Type: Wildfire Vegetation Type: Brush and timber Injuries: 2
Agency: Inyo National Forest, U.S.D.A. Forest Service
Resources Assigned: Helicopters: 1 Crews: 2 Packers: 2 Total Personnel: 31
Current Situation: More accurate mapping confirms the Cow Fire at 1,975 acres. The fire perimeter remains 30 percent contained.

As expected, the fire has slowly moved across the landscape and reached the natural barriers which firefighters have been reinforcing as control lines.

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Now that the fire has reached the predetermined control lines, the complexity of the incident will begin to wind down. Command of the fire transitioned to a Type 4 management organization on Wednesday.

The firefighters who remain assigned to the incident will focus on securing control lines and repairing suppression efforts where appropriate.

Helicopters and pack strings of mules will begin to extract supplies that are no longer needed on the fireline.

What does it mean when fire managers declare the Cow Fire 30 percent contained? Fire managers asses the entire fire perimeter and report what percent of the whole boundary they consider secure. A section of control line is declared contained only when firefighters are confident that there is no heat or potential for fire to escape the line.

A control line can be a natural barrier such as rock outcroppings, creeks and old fire scars; or it can be a manmade fuel break such as a road, handline or dozer line that is created with the use of tools or heavy equipment. In order to secure a
control line, firefighters mitigate hot spots next to a fireline by “mopping up” or mixing the hot spots with water and soilto cool it down; similar to how you would extinguish a campfire. They also fell any burning trees that have potential to fall across the line and ignite fuels outside the fire perimeter. After the initial fireline is constructed, it may take several days or weeks for it to be declared contained.

Rain storms have significantly reduced smoke impacts from the Cow Fire. Smoke may settle overnight in the South Fork of the Kern River, Kennedy Meadows, Owens Valley and Olancha. Smoke will lift during the day and be visible from recreational sites and trails in the Golden Trout Wilderness, the Highway 395 corridor and surrounding communities.

Closure Order:
Several back-country trail segments have been closed for public safety and firefighter focus. All segments are on R35E
T18S Section 31 and R35E T19S Sections 4,5,6,8,9,17 and 18 of the Templeton Mountain topo map. The segments are:
 3507 from Templeton Cow Camp east to the intersection with 3412/3512 near Strawberry Creek
 3510 from the intersection with 3512 near Strawberry Creek east to the South Fork of the Kern River
 3512 from the intersection with 3510 (near Strawberry Creek) south to Schaeffer Stringer near Iron Spring
 3511 from where it intersects 3512 south to where it crosses Schaeffer Stringer
A Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) is in place for the Cow Fire as well.
For the latest information go to InciWeb: (note: this is listed as the “Cow”;
another fire in Oregon is the “Cow Fire” on InciWeb) or the Inyo National Forest Facebook page.


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