Ridgecrest, CA, USA — Fire officials continue to monitor two lightning-caused fires located in backcountry areas of the Sequoia National Forest in the Golden Trout Wilderness. Both fires are being managed as wildland fire use fires. “Wildland Fire Use is a tool that allows us to manage naturally ignited wildland fires to achieve certain resource benefits, reduce future suppression costs, and to the extent possible, restore natural ecological processes,” says Fire Management Officer (FMO) Paul Gibbs.
The Maggie Fire is burning on the southeast side of Maggie Peak. First discovered the evening of July 9, this wildland fire use project has grown to 3 acres, and is expected to grow to 13 acres today. Anticipated fire growth before containment is between 200 and 500 acres. There are 30 firefighters working to improve natural barriers and trails in the area where the fire is expected to burn. These will become containment lines as the fire grows to its anticipated size. The Summit Trail is being utilized as one of these lines. Please notify the Springville office for current information if you plan to travel this trail near Maggie Peak in the coming weeks. Trail closures in the area are anticipated.
The second fire, called the Tamarack Fire was discovered by hikers in the area on July 10, this fire is currently 2 acres in size. It is located southwest of Coyote Pass in the Golden Trout Wilderness. This fire could potentially grow to between 300 – 500 acres and is currently burning in the headwaters of Tamarack Creek.
According to Gibbs, the fires are being monitored closely to ensure they burn as expected, smoke concerns are mitigated, fire effects are minimal, and there are no threats to communities or public and firefighter safety.
If fire managers determine the fire can no longer be managed as a wildland fire use project, they will initiate immediate suppression action, he added.
These fires were ignited by lightning generated from storms active in the mountains above Springville. Storms have come with light scattered rain, but not enough rain to suppress the fires they ignite. If you travel in the backcountry of the Sequoia National Forest and discover a wildland fire, please contact the nearest fire department and report it as soon as possible. For more information about Wildland Fire Use, contact Deputy Forest Fire Management Officer Brent Skaggs at (559) 784-1500. For further questions regarding the Maggie or Tamarack Fires, please call the Springville office (559) 539-2607, ext. 292. This number is a recorded message with the latest information.