(Pinedale, WY) – Release from the U.S. Forest Service – Bridger-Teton National Forest:
Crews have been battling the 80-acre Soda Lake Fire west of Big Piney, Wyoming today (July 28, 2021). Wyoming Team 2, a type 3 incident management team assumed command this morning.
The Soda Lake fire was first reported yesterday (July 27, 2021) around 3 pm.
Aviation and ground resources were immediately dispatched to the fire from Bridger Teton National Forest and Sublette County Unified Fire. A type 3 incident command team was also ordered.
The Soda Lake fire is actively burning on 80 acres just south of Soda Lake in the South Cottonwood Creek drainage. This landscape near Lander Peak is a mixture of subalpine fir, sage, and meadows.
This area is approximately three miles from the forest boundary with Bureau of Land Management, state, and private land. Multiple values are at risk including oil and gas wells. Firefighters arrived on the fire throughout the day.
Four crews representing federal and local agencies are currently working to fully suppress the fire. Light, medium, and heavy helicopters have also been assigned to the fire to assess its size and behavior and support firefighting on the ground.
Large Air Tankers have also flown multiple missions to assist in slowing fire spread. “Despite the pending weather,” said Rob Hoelscher, acting Big Piney District Ranger. ”We still have concerns over the extreme amount of timber and fuels in the area that will continue to challenge our operations.”
Thunderstorms will bring strong winds to the fire area. Unstable weather can lead to erratic fire behavior. The Bridger-Teton National Forest remains under Stage 1 fire restrictions.