August 10, 2012 – 1:00 p.m.
A Red Flag Warning remains in effect until 9:00 p.m. Friday due to critical fire weather conditions. The fire danger level in Yellowstone is Extreme. Fire restrictions are in effect. The northern third of the park received nearly 300 lightning strikes as thunderstorms rolled across the region late Thursday, with more thunderstorms, lightning, and gusty winds forecast on into Saturday.
Fan 1 and Fan 2 Fires:
These two lightning caused fires in the extreme northwest corner of the park were spotted from the air late Tuesday, August 7, by the West Yellowstone Smokejumper aircraft. The combined fires, estimated at 2 acres, were declared 100-percent contained Friday morning, August 10. The 22-person Blue Ridge Interagency Hotshot crew from Arizona and 6 firefighters from Saguaro National Park remain assigned to the fire.
This lightning caused fire was discovered Tuesday, August 7. Is its burning in the backcountry southeast of Tower Junction, on the east side of the Yellowstone River. Firefighters are monitoring this fire, which is being allowed to play its natural role in the ecosystem. It has shown little recent activity, and is still estimated at one-half of an acre. Backcountry campsite 2Y1 is temporarily closed due to the fire.
This lightning caused fire, burning in the backcountry nine miles southeast of Canyon, was discovered on July 29. This fire received some rain earlier this week. It remains estimated at 25 acres. The Dewdrop Fire is the largest fire currently burning in the park. As a precaution, an area around the fire including some backcountry campsites and trail segments are temporarily closed. Details are available at any park Visitor Center or Backcountry Office, or online at http://go.usa.gov/GAD.
Other Fires and Smoke:
Firefighters are also monitoring the Range, Camera, and Dewdrop 2 fires. All have shown little recent activity and are all less than one acre. While each of the park’s fires may produce a smoke column visible from some roads or trails when actively burning, most of the smoke present in the region is due to fires burning south and west of Yellowstone, and not from the small fires in the park.
Campfires are allowed only in established fire grates or fire rings in picnic areas or campgrounds. The use of portable charcoal grills is prohibited. Any fire which can produce an ash is prohibited in the backcountry. You can use portable stoves and lanterns which use propane, white gas, kerosene, or jellied petroleum for fuel anywhere in the park. Smoking is prohibited along all trails and anywhere in the backcountry. Smoking is allowed in vehicles and along roads, near buildings, and in developed campgrounds or picnic areas if you are standing in an area at least three feet in diameter where nothing on the ground will burn.
Impacts to visitors and area residents:
All park entrances, roads, campgrounds, lodging, stores, and other visitor services are open. A few trail segments and some backcountry campsites are temporarily closed.
There is a Red Flag Warning until 9:00 p.m. Friday due to critical fire weather conditions. Thunderstorms are forecast through Saturday, with a return to hot and dry conditions again Sunday.
–National Park Service