Fir Mountain Fire 8/12, Final Update

This is the Wednesday 8/12 Final Report:

[THE DALLES, Ore.]  The Fir Mountain Fire reached full containment this afternoon and has transitioned to patrol status with The Dalles Unit.  Resources on the fire were released to their home unit late this afternoon.

Monday night crews used handheld infrared cameras across the fire to find any remaining heat sources.  Crews worked on these hot spots yesterday and will continue to identify heat and smoke today to secure the fire.  Hose and other supplies continue to be removed from the fire and returned to the fire cache for clean-up and re-supply.

All road closures and evacuations for the fire area have been lifted in both Wasco and Hood River counties. 

The Fir Mountain Fire is 313 acres and was first reported late on August 1, 2020.  The fire is human caused and under investigation.  Anyone with information which may help investigators find the person responsible for the fire is asked to call the Oregon State Police Tip Line, 1-800-452-7888.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com

This is the Tuesday Morning 8/11 Report

[THE DALLES, Ore.]  Firefighting activities on the Fir Mountain Fire today will focus on mop-up and continuing to secure the fire in preparation to transfer the fire back to The Dalles Unit.  Extinguishing heat near the perimeter and any hot spots in the interior is needed so the fire can be placed into patrol status and monitored in the coming days by local fire resources.  The fire is 90% contained, with full containment expected Wednesday.

A Red Flag Warning has been issued by the National Weather Service for the fire and surrounding area for critical fire weather, breezy winds and low humidity.  Resources on the fire will be available for initial attack and to support the local unit in fire suppression activities.

The Fir Mountain Fire is 313 acres and was first reported late on August 1, 2020.  The fire is human caused and under investigation.  Anyone with information which may help investigators find the person responsible for the fire is asked to call the Oregon State Police Tip Line, 1-800-452-7888.

The Wasco County Sheriff removed all evacuations from the east side of the fire and reopened Godberson Road to public travel on Monday.  Details are available on the Wasco County Sheriff’s Facebook page:  www.facebook.com/WascoCountySheriff.  Fir Mountain Road and associated side roads in Hood River County were also reopened Monday to public travel.  For public and firefighter safety the speed limit for the road is reduced.  The road is a single lane road in many places, the public is reminded to use caution in the area and watch for activity associated with firefighting operations.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com

This is a Monday Afternoon Outreach Request:

[THE DALLES, Ore.]  The Oregon Department of Forestry is seeking information related to finding the individual responsible for starting the Fir Mountain Fire.  Investigators were able to locate the point of origin for the fire and have determined it to be human caused.  Fire danger in The Dalles Unit is EXTREME, and restrictions associated with public activities are in place.

The Fir Mountain Fire was reported on August 1, 2020 on private lands in Hood River County along Fir Mountain Road.  Fire suppression activities continue on the fire with full containment expected Wednesday, August 12, 2020. 

Suppression efforts have cost landowners and the citizens of Oregon more than $3 million.

Anyone with information which could be used to find the person responsible for causing the fire can call the Oregon State Police Tip Line, 1-800-452-7888.

This is the Monday Morning 8/10 Report:

[THE DALLES, Ore.]  Sunday evening the Central Oregon Fire Management Service transferred command of the Fir Mountain Fire back to Oregon Department of Forestry’s (ODF) The Dalles Unit.  Approximately 130 firefighters continue to staff the Fir Mountain Fire as a Type 4 organization.  Operations continue to focus on mop-up of the interior of the fire and locating any hot spots near the perimeter.  Resources include local contract hand crews and engines from ODF’s Northwest Oregon Area.  Full containment of the fire is expected Wednesday.

Helicopters assigned to the fire will be released mid-day today to return to home areas or staff other fires.  Local aircraft is available if air support is needed on the fire.  Engines assigned to the fire are available to respond to new fires if the need arises.

The Fir Mountain Fire is 313 acres and was first reported late on August 1, 2020.  The fire is human caused and under investigation.  Anyone with information which may help investigators find the person responsible for the fire is asked to call the Oregon State Police Tip Line, 1-800-452-7888.

The Wasco County Sheriff has removed all evacuations from the east side of the fire and reopened Godberson Road to public travel.  Details are available on the Wasco County Sheriff’s Facebook page:  www.facebook.com/WascoCountySheriff.  Fir Mountain Road and associated side roads in Hood River County have also been reopened to public travel.  For public and firefighter safety the speed limit for the road has been reduced.  The road is a single lane road in many places, the public is reminded to use caution in the area and watch for activity associated with firefighting operations.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com

This is the Sunday Morning 8/9 Report:

THE DALLES, ORE. –  Work on the Fir Mountain Fire Saturday increased the containment to 80%.  Today firefighters will continue mop-up operations working from the perimeter into the interior of the fire.  Firefighters use a grid system to locate any areas of heat, then cool these spots with water and dirt as they pull the material apart.  Fire behavior on the fire Saturday was minimal.  Full containment of the fire is expected Wednesday.  The Central Oregon Fire Management Service Type 3 Team will transition command this evening back to Oregon Department of Forestry’s The Dalles Unit.  A Type 4 organization will shadow the team today in preparation for the transition.

Saturday, Wasco County Sheriff’s Department reduced the Level 3 evacuation notice for 2900 Godberson Road to a Level 1.  The Level 1 evacuation notice for Mosier Creek Road area from 3475 Mosier Creek Road to 3950 Mosier Creek Road to 1 mile south of 8020 Ketchum Road to 2000 Ketchum Road is still in effect as well. Evacuation information is available at https://www.facebook.com/WascoCountySheriff.

Road closures are still in place for Godberson Road and Fir Mountain Road for public and firefighter safety. Fire engines, water tenders, heavy equipment and supply vehicles continue to utilize these narrow, steep roads to support fire suppression activities.

The fire was first reported August 1, 2020 and remains under investigation.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com.

This is the Saturday Morning 8/8 Report:

THE DALLES, ORE. –  Yesterday firefighters increased containment of the Fir Mountain Fire to 70%. The fire remains 313 acres and within its current footprint with a combination of dozer line, handline and roads around the perimeter.

Fire resources continue to conduct mop-up operations utilizing hose lays to increase the depth of cold ground interior of the fireline to further secure the perimeter of the fire. Additionally, the incident management team continues to use aerial and ground infrared technology to detect interior hot spots and check for spot fires. Fire behavior remains minimal.

Yesterday, Wasco County Sheriff’s Department reduced the Level 3 evacuation notice for 2900 Godberson Road to a Level 1.  The Level 1 evacuation notice for Mosier Creek Road area from 3475 Mosier Creek Road to 3950 Mosier Creek Road to 1 mile south of 8020 Ketchum Road to 2000 Ketchum Road is still in effect as well. Evacuation information is available at https://www.facebook.com/WascoCountySheriff.

Road closures are still in place for Godberson Road and Fir Mountain Road for public and firefighter safety. Fire engines, water tenders, heavy equipment and supply vehicles continue to utilize these narrow, steep roads to support fire suppression activities.

The fire was first reported August 1, 2020 and remains under investigation.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com.

This is the Friday Morning 8/7 Report:

THE DALLES, ORE. –  The Fir Mountain Fire remains 313 acres with a combination of dozer line, handline and roads around the perimeter and is now 60% contained. Yesterday’s storm front produced minimal precipitation over the fire, but did bring significant winds. Firefighters maintained the fire within its current footprint.

Today firefighting resources continue mop-up operations utilizing hose lays. Resources are increasing the depth of cooled ground interior of the fireline to further secure the perimeter of the fire. Fire behavior remains minimal.

The Wasco County Sheriff’s Department has reduced the Level 3 evacuation notice for 2900 Godberson Road to a Level 1.  The Level 1 evacuation notice for Mosier Creek Road area from 3475 Mosier Creek Road to 3950 Mosier Creek Road to 1 mile south of 8020 Ketchum Road to 2000 Ketchum Road is still in effect as well. For public safety road closures are in place for Godberson Road and Fir Mountain Road due to fire suppression activity. Evacuation information is available at https://www.facebook.com/WascoCountySheriff.

The fire was first reported August 1, 2020 and remains under investigation.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com.

This is the Thursday Morning 8/6 Report:

Morning Update

THE DALLES, ORE. –  Firefighters continue to make good progress on the Fir Mountain Fire. The fire remains 313 acres and is now 50% contained. By the end of yesterday’s day shift, the fire was lined around it’s perimeter by dozer line, handline and roads. Last night’s breezy conditions produced new interior consumption of previously unburned pockets within containment lines; however, firefighters held the fire within its existing footprint.

Today fire resources will continue strengthening the perimeter by increasing the depth of cooled ground interior of the fireline. Resources will utilize hose lays to conduct mop-up operations. As windy conditions are expected to remain over the incident today, firefighters will be gridding the perimeter of the fire for potential spot fires.

For public safety road closures are in place for Godberson Road and Fir Mountain Road due to fire suppression activity.  Evacuation information for the eastern flank of the fire is available at https://www.facebook.com/WascoCountySheriff.

The fire was first reported August 1, 2020 and remains under investigation.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com.

This is the Wednesday 8/5 Report:

THE DALLES, ORE. –  Firefighters continue to make progress on the Fir Mountain Fire.  Overnight the fire was held within the existing footprint and this morning the fire has fireline around 75% of the perimeter.  Today fire resources will focus on completing construction of containment lines using existing roads and heavy equipment.  Crews will continue developing hoselays for water distribution throughout the fire.  Strengthening firelines and securing the perimeter is a priority today, as winds are expected to increase throughout the day.  Helicopters will be available today to drop water on hot spots as needed by ground crews.  Mop-up activities will progress from the fire perimeter into the interior to further secure the fire.  The fire is 313 acres with 30% containment.

For public safety road closures are in place for Godberson Road and Fir Mountain Road due to fire suppression activity.  Evacuation information for the eastern flank of the fire is available at https://www.facebook.com/WascoCountySheriff.

A vehicle accident involving a firefighter, not engaged on the fireline, occurred Tuesday evening.  The firefighter was not injured and will return to duty on the fireline today.

The fire was first reported August 1, 2020 and remains under investigation.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com

This is the Tuesday 8/4 Report:

THE DALLES, ORE. –  Despite breezy afternoon winds Tuesday, firefighters on the Fir Mountain Fire held the fire within the perimeter and only saw activity from the consumption of unburned fuels within the interior.  Fire behavior moderated from the last few days and fire resources were able to focus on establishing and reinforcing firelines.  Containment for the fire has increased to 30% this evening.  The fire is 313 acres.

Today operations used helicopters to drop water and cool the spot fires on the eastern flank to allow ground resources to build fireline on the edge of the fire.  Heavy equipment is being used to build fireline as possible while hand crews are being used in the more difficult terrain.  Heavy fuels have continued to hamper fireline construction and mop-up activities.  On the east flank of the fire firefighters were able to begin construction of hoselays to deliver water to this area of the fire.

Additional resources arrived on the fire today bringing the total assigned resources to 400.    

For public safety road closures are in place for Godberson Road and Fir Mountain Road due to fire suppression activity.  Evacuation information for the eastern flank of the fire is available at https://www.facebook.com/WascoCountySheriff.

The fire was first reported August 1, 2020 and remains under investigation.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com

This is the Monday 8/3 Report:

[THE DALLES, Ore]   Today firefighters on the Fir Mountain Fire battled winds and humidity similar to what they experienced Sunday.  Air resources were again used to slow the spread of the spotfires in area east of the main fire while crews and equipment were kept busy working to contain any additional spotfires.  Winds blowing embers outside the fireline rapidly ignited the dry fuels and challenged firefighters.    

Initial mapping work today from helicopter platforms and ground truthing identified the perimeter of several of the spotfires on the eastern edge of the fire area.  Fire operations worked with the Wasco County Sheriff who determined the need for a Level 3 Evacuation (GO!) for three residences on Godberson Road.  This evacuation notice is not due to fire growth.  Additionally a Level 1 Evacuation (BE READY!) has been issued for other residences on the eastern flank of the fire.  The details of the evacuation area are available on the Wasco County Sheriff’s Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/WascoCountySheriff.

With preliminary mapping of the larger main fire and identification of the numerous spotfires the incident management team estimates the total fire acreage to be 200 acres.  Spotfires between the main fire and Godberson Road range in size from a quarter acre to nearly ten.  Sunday night firefighters  completed fireline construction with a bulldozer of a ~2 acre spotfire adjacent to Godberson Road, today this fire was kept within the fireline.  Resources today were successful in minimizing growth of the spotfires using heavy equipment and hand crews in coordination with helicopter bucket drops, water from the fireboss tankers, and large air tanker retardant drops. 

Crews also constructed hoselays to disburse water throughout the fire area for mop-up and to extinguish hot spots and fire outside the fire line.  The heavy fuel in the fire area is hampering efforts to extinguish the fire, as well as making it difficult to secure the line and mop-up the interior.  The fire is estimated to be five percent contained this evening.

The fire was reported late in the night August 1 and remains under investigation.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com

Aircraft was critical today helping slow the spread of the Fir Mountain Fire, supporting ground resources in constructing fire line. (Caption from ODF tweet from Sunday)
A helicopter can be seen in the upper left of the photo against the smoke in this image from the Oregon Department of Forestry.

This report was sent from the Oregon Department of Forestry Sunday night.

[THE DALLES, Ore.]  Today firefighters on the Fir Mountain Fire were challenged with wind and dry vegetation as they used dozers and hand crews to construct fireline on the fire perimeter.  Air resources, including large air tankers and water scooping aircraft were used throughout the day to support ground resources in efforts to control the spread of the fire.  The fire has grown to approximately 250 acres this evening, burning on private forestland and Hood River County ownership.

The fire is located eight miles southeast of Hood River, burning east from Fir Mountain Road toward Godberson Road.  Single tree torching and spotting across the fireline has hampered efforts to secure the perimeter in some areas.  Dozers are being used to construct fireline where the terrain allows, and hand crews are working in areas where slope limits access for equipment.

In addition to the fixed wing aircraft and helicopters working on the fire today resources included three dozers, four tenders, six hand crews, five wildland fire engines, and numerous overhead.  These include contract resources, Wy’East Fire, Mosier Fire, Hood River Fire, Parkdale Fire, Mount Hood National Forest, and Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area.  The Hood River and Wasco County Sheriff’s offices are working with incident command to ensure public safety in the fire area.

A Type 3 Team from Central Oregon Fire Management Service will take command of the fire this evening.  Resources will staff the fire tonight, taking advantage of cooler temperatures and humidity recovery but will continue to experience strong winds on the exposed ridgetops. Firefighters will be focusing to secure existing fireline and minimize spread of the fire.

The fire was reported late Saturday night and is currently under investigation.

ODF’s Central Oregon District continues to serve landowners and the public as an essential service for Oregonians.  Please call or email to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.  For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com