YOSEMITE – Thunderstorms came through Yosemite National Park starting on July 1, sparking six new lightning-caused fires.
Lightning-caused fires can take days or weeks to detect because vegetation has to dry out enough to create smoke or visible flames after the storm passes over. Additional fires may be discovered as that process takes place.
Most of these recent fires are small; single tree strikes that amount to less than a tenth of an acre. These fires are in the wilderness and are being monitored by either Yosemite fire crews hiking into the fire areas, or via air reconnaissance due to location, sparse fuels and low growth potential.
New fires in Yosemite:
Indian Canyon (37 47.532 x 119 35.148 – Mariposa Co. at 7200′ elevation, July 3). This fire is between the Tioga Rd and the Yosemite Valley. It is less than .1 acre in size. It is smoldering and creeping, with a low rate of spread, and is burning in two snags within timber and needle cast. It is an area of few recent fires.
McGurk (No Lat x long – Mariposa Co. at 7800′ elevation, July 2). This fire is within the McGurk Meadow, near a trail to Dewey Point from Glacier Point Road. It has low potential for spread, and was found to be in a single green lodgepole pine. It is surrounded by green grass, and is smoldering in a short needle/lodgepole pine forest around meadow. It has little potential for spread.
Porcupine Flat (37 48.962 x 119 34.416 – Mariposa Co., at 8000′, July 3). The top of a single green red fir tree was struck by lightning. There is no ground fire, but smoke may be seen from the Tioga Road. It has low potential for growth.
Smokey Jack ( 37 49.693 x 119 41.189 – Tuolumne Co., at 8000′ elevation, July 3). A single tree was struck. This fire has low to moderate spread potential as it is smoldering and creeping with no visible flame lengths.
White Cascade (37 54.926 x 119 23.780 – Tuolumne Co, at 9000′ elevation, July 3). This is a remote fire near Glen Aulin High Sierra camp and west of Tuolumne Meadows. It poses no threat to trails and has a low spread potential. It is creeping and smoldering through surface fuels. Smoke or haze may be visible in the area.
Fires declared out:
The Deer Lick Fire, (July 2). It was along the Wawona Road, and was suppressed by Yosemite Valley Engine crew on Thursday night. It was near the Wawona Road and south of the community of Wawona. It was declared out Friday July 3.
Yosemite Creek (37 50.310 x 119 21.813 – Mariposa Co., 8,020′, June 7). This lightning caused fire has been declared out.
As with all fires, park officials consider staff and visitor safety to be of paramount importance. Each fire, regardless of size, is assessed for the appropriate course of action.
At this time there are no road or trail closures and the park remains open. Smoke is staying local over the fires and has not been observed traveling to any smoke sensitive areas.
All visitors are urged to use established campgrounds for fires. In all campfires, when departing, please be sure fires are completely out.
No building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire, or cooking fire (including charcoal fires) within Yosemite National Park including designated Wilderness and at High Sierra Camps below 6,000 feet in elevation. Portable stoves using pressurized gas, liquid fuel, or propane are permitted as are alcohol stoves (with and without a shutoff valve) including alcohol tablet/cube stoves. “Sierra” (twig) stoves are not permitted.
No smoking below 6,000 feet, except within an enclosed vehicle, a building in which smoking is allowed, a campground or picnic area where wood and charcoal fires are allowed or in a designated smoking area.
Campfires and cooking fires may still be used in designated campgrounds in developed portions of the park in accordance with park regulations.
For more information on where campfires are allowed, click here.
• Yosemite Web: http://www.nps.gov/yose/blogs/fireinfo.htm.
• Air Quality – three sites are listed: ; http://smoke.airfire.org/monitoringReport/#/?monitors=060431001&monitors=NPS.YOS1003.Ebam&monitors=Yosemite.NP.1&date=LATEST&productType=plotTable ; http://www.californiasmokeinfo.blogspot.com/ & http://viewer.smoke.airfire.org/run/standard/CANSAC-2km/2015062200/
• Yosemite National Park Web page: Yosemite Wildland Fire Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Yosemite -Wildland-Fire/12463296455395