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Largest Ross Lake fire spreads to 252 acres

Three fires continue to burn near Ross Lake this week, the largest of them spreading to 252 acres. Hikers and boaters might see the smoke, but no trails or campgrounds are closed.

Here's the press release from the National Park Service.

Marblemount, WA – August 23, 2013 – A total of eight lightning fires have ignited within North Cascades National Park Complex in the last month. Three active fires continue to burn while the rest have been declared out. The Big Beaver, Arctic Dan, and Red Mountain fires are burning in areas where fire can be managed through natural processes, as long as they stay within the designated management areas. The fires are being managed as the Arctic Dan Fire Complex.

Boaters on Ross Lake and hikers may see smokes and intermittent flames emanating from the Big Beaver and Arctic Dan fires as they hike on the East Bank Trail located on the shore of Ross Lake. There are no trails or campgrounds impacted or closed. Some fires have been suppressed within pre-identified North Cascades National Park fire suppression zones. Although not managed as part of this fire complex, the Falling Bacon Fire is being monitored by the Forest Service, and is located within 1 ½ mile of the Park boundary in the upper portion of Bacon Creek located on Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. The Riddle Fire is also a small fire burning in a remote area of the Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest located just south of the Park boundary near Lake Chelan. Check the following link for updated information and photos of fires comprising the Arctic Dan Complex:

Big Beaver Fire – started August 14th, 2013

Late August 14th, the Big Beaver fire was detected mid-slope on the north facing slope of Sourdough Mountain. It is now estimated to be 1.5 acres in size. This naturally caused fire is being managed for resource benefit. Staff will continue to monitor the fire from Desolation Lookout and from Ross Lake via boat. The fire is located in steep and extremely hazardous terrain. Impacts to the public are minimal at this time. Smoke may be visible from Ross Lake and the East Bank Trail.

Arctic Dan Fire – started July 17th, 2013

The Arctic Dan fire, estimated at 252 acres, is burning in the remote backcountry in steep, rugged terrain in heavy timber. It’s located on the west side of Ross Lake between Arctic Creek and No Name Creek, within the Stephen Mather Wilderness. Aerial reconnaissance revealed minimal fire activity. It is being monitored by aviation and staff at Desolation Lookout. Smoke may be visible from Highway 20, Hozomeen, and/or Ross Lake.

Red Mountain Fire – started August 9th, 2013

The Red Mountain fire is estimated at 2 acres and burning in sub-alpine timber and brush. It is located between Thunder, Fisher and Logan Creek. It is 21 miles northwest of Stehekin and 11 miles south of Highway 20. With minimal fire activity, it is being monitored via aerial reconnaissance and staff on Sourdough Lookout, as needed.

Other fires declared out are the following fires: Ruby, Cabin Creek, Boathouse, Sourdough Chute, and McAlester. Although the park has received scattered and minimal rainfall, lightning caused fires can smolder and creep underground for several days before emerging with more activity and visible smoke. More lightning is predicted in the next several days. Please observe all outdoor burning bans of nearby counties, state lands and cities. Within North Cascades National Park Complex, campfires are still allowed within designated, approved fire pits. Never leave campfires unattended! When putting out your campfire, use lots of water, stir and be sure that it’s out COLD!