SIERRA NATIONAL FOREST – Mountain area residents continue to experience smoke from the Rough Fire, burning southeast of Madera County about 50 miles, near Hume Lake off Highway 180.
The Rough Fire grew 4,048 acres on Sunday, and is now estimated at nearly 21,000 acres with 0 percent containment. The fire was lightning-caused. It was reported on July 31, and is now under the management of the South Central Sierra Interagency Incident Management Team – the same team that was handling the Willow Fire in North Fork when the Rough Fire was reported.
On Sunday, Kings Canyon National Park issued an evacuation of Cedar Grove. Highway 180 remains closed beyond the junction of Hume Road. The fire does not threaten these facilities, but the evacuation is necessary because Highway 180 is the only route in and out of the area. The road to Hume Lake remains open.
Firefighters on the northern flank of the fire conducted burnout operations to strengthen indirect firelines and will continue burning today. Some of yesterday’s fire growth was due to these operations.
Helicopters will continue to be the primary means of direct fire suppression. The steep, rough terrain limits the safe insertion of firefighters, due to lack of adequate safety zones and escape routes.
Firefighter and public safety is the number one priority. Because of this, fire managers are working to safely contain the fire without exposing firefighters to undue risk.
As a high-pressure ridge sets up over the area, high temperatures and drier air will increase fire activity. Increased smoke will be observed throughout the region. Smoke will be heavy in the morning, and increased southwest winds should clear it by early afternoon.
Visitors may experience smoke impacts in many popular recreational areas including Wishon Reservoir, Hume Lake and Cedar Grove area. For air quality updates visit http://www.valleyair.org/aqinfo/forecast.htm for more information.
Closures & Advisories:
Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks issued a Mandatory Evacuation of the Cedar Grove area.
Sierra National Forest issued a closure order for the Rough Fire Area.
Sequoia National Forest issued a closure order for the Hume Lake and Monarch Wilderness.
There are currently 1,064 personnel assigned to the incident, including 23 crews, 27 engines and 5 helicopters
Kings River Drainage, 5 miles North of Hume Lake and 2.5 miles southwest of Spanish Mountain.
The Rough Fire is being managed on the Sierra National Forest, Sequoia National Forest, and Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks.
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.