Updates on Lions, Ferguson fires

News release

North Fork, Calif., August 16, 2018Last night the fire was flown by aircraft using infrared imaging to get an accurate location and intensity of the fire.

This information will be utilized to make more accurate maps of the fire lines and help in making tactical decisions. Smoke conditions increased yesterday with increased fire activity along the Spano Meadow to Naked Lady to Earthquake Meadow line.

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The Lions Fire is currently estimated at 10,922 acres with 70% containment. There are 172 personnel committed to the fire, including 5 crews and 5 helicopters.

Fire crews remain committed to creating, improving and maintaining containment lines along the western portion of the fire between Earthquake Meadow and Trail Camp in the North Fork of the San Joaquin river drainage. Crews are committed to keeping the fire on the east side of the river. Personnel will also continue constructing a contingency line along the wilderness boundary from Green Mountain south toward Cattle Mountain.

The fire along the Spano Meadow to Naked Lady to Earthquake Meadow line showed moderate, with short running, fire activity. This created a visible increase in smoke coming from the fire. Between Earthquake Meadow and Trail Camp, the fire continued to back downslope toward the North Fork of the San Joaquin River.

The northeast, east, and southern flanks of the fire are contained. These areas will be patrolled by aircraft daily to verify there is no fire activity along these lines.

The area to the south and west of the North Fork of the San Joaquin river has 50% tree mortality from mountain pine beetles and drought.  Combined with the very steep terrain this creates very difficult firefighting conditions.

Winds are expected to increase today out of the southwest becoming gusty in the afternoon. Drier conditions are expected for the remainder of the week, allowing for the possibility of increased fire behavior that will also have a visible increase in smoke that could impact Devil’s Postpile, Mono Basin, June Lake, Mammoth Lakes and Owens Valley.

Closures: There is an emergency trail closure for the Fern Lake and Beck Lake Trails on the Inyo National Forest and emergency trail closures and a Forest Order to close the area on the Sierra National Forest (west of the North Fork of the San Joaquin River, north of the Middle Fork of the San Joaquin River and South of Iron Creek).

Smoke: See the smoke outlook report or visit https://airnow.gov/

Lions Fire:  https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5850/

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