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Sierra National Forest E42 on Detwiler Fire - photo SNF Facebook page

Detwiler Fire Pushes North And East Above Merced River

MARIPOSA COUNTY — Though residents in the town of Mariposa were allowed to return home today, the Detwiler Fire is by no means over.

Active fire behavior continues to challenge firefighters on the north end of the county as it moves through steep, dangerous terrain, and still poses a major threat to the communities of Coulterville, Dogtown and Greeley Hill. (see map below for fire map with details)

Helicopters actively worked the area north of the Merced River Canyon, the east side of Lake McClure below Coulterville, and Quartz Mountain.

The fire made a good run on the east side this afternoon, on the mountains just west of Briceburg. The air tankers pounded the leading edge along the west side of the North Fork of the Merced River near Quartz mountain, cooling things off to allow dozers to get in and cut line. Efforts were focused on keeping the fire from crossing the North Fork drainage.

Dozers also did a lot of heavy work on the northeast corner near Dogtown.

There will be a community meeting tonight at the Greeley Hill Community Center, 10332 Fiske Road near Coulterville at 7:30 p.m.

Cal Fire Incident Management Team 4, the Mariposa County Sheriff’s Office and additional cooperating agencies on the Detwiler Fire will provide an operational briefing and be available for questions. Please arrive early as the meeting will start promptly at 7:30 p.m.

If you have questions about the meeting or the fire, please call the Fire Information Line at (844) MMU-FIRE (844-668-3473).

In the Mariposa area, just after 9 a.m., an air ambulance was called to Highway 140 at Mt. Bullion Cutoff Road for a firefighter who was injured in an accident involving a fire engine. The firefighter suffered minor injuries, was airlifted to Community Regional Medical Center, and has since been released.

PG&E is making good progress on repairs to power lines, poles and infrastructure in the Mariposa area. More than 11,000 people lost power in the first day of this fire, but lines were being re-energized as residents returned this morning.

Firefighter performing another important job on the Detwiler Fire – photo Sierra National Forest Facebook page

Though the U.S. Forest Service has been inadvertently omitted from the list of cooperating agencies, we want to acknowledge the firefighters manning all those big green engines on the firelines, especially our local crews from the Sierra National Forest.

Triple-digit heat is expected to return this weekend.

Residents are warned that just because the evacuation order has been lifted, they are still under an evacuation advisory, and need to be vigilant and prepared to leave it conditions change.

The Detwiler Fire has now scorched more than 115 square miles. It started on Sunday, July 16, just after 4 p.m. in Hunters Valley.

We will update acreage, containment and any new word of evacuations and closures when new data is released this evening.

One comment

  1. Any word on how the first started?

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