BEND, Ore. - (Update: New acreage figure, Thursday morning update from Willamette NF)
Elk and Hosmer Lakes and the surrounding area were moved to a higher, Level 2 pre-evacuation alert on Wednesday due to increased fire behavior and expected growth on the Nash Fire, which has grown to more than 2,200 acres as of Thursday on the Willamette National Forest northwest of the Cascades Lake Highway.
The lake area had been under a lower, Level 1 pre-evacuation notice since Tuesday afternoon. The fire is about four miles away to the northwest, at last report.
Here's the Thursday morning Willamette Fires update:
Higher humidity and light west northwest winds may bring favorable firefighting conditions today. A high pressure system is anticipated to build tonight with warmer temperatures and drier conditions returning Friday. Yesterday's afternoon winds brought clearer conditions to the western Cascade region. Fires continue to produce smoke and haze impacting Breitenbush Detroit, Oakridge and McKenzie Bridge.
MCKENZIE RIVER RANGER DISTRICT FIRES
The Horse Creek Complex includes the Avenue Fire, burning three miles southeast of McKenzie Bridge, and nearby wilderness fires Olallie Lookout, Separation, Roney, and Nash. Firefighters began structure protection in the Foley Ridge area yesterday and will continue to evaluate values at risk today. Aerial resources will be utilized as needed. Crews and equipment will be used to construct line to Highway 242.
Due to the Nash Fire, the areas surrounding Elk Lake and Hosmer Lake have been elevated to Level 2 evacuation status (set) and the areas surrounding Lava Lake and Little Lava Lake have been placed in Level 1 (ready) evacuation status. Contact the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office at (541) 693-6911 or visit https://sheriff.deschutes.org/ for more information.
Fire resources will utilize indirect tactics on the Rebel Fire today, preparing line along FSR 19 (Aufderheide Drive). If conditions are favorable, firing operations will be used as needed to hold the line.
Firefighters continue to monitor and patrol the Box Canyon and Pete Fires.
DETROIT RANGER DISTRICT FIRES
The Potato Hill Fire, burning west of FSR 2690 and south of Highway 20 is anticipated to grow to the east today. Firefighters will continue to use direct and indirect tactics to limit fire growth.
Firefighters will work to strengthen the control line around the Scorpion Fire, focusing on the southeast flank to hold the fire north of Highway 46. Crews continue to hold the Whitewater and Little Devil Fires within existing containment lines. Firefighters will monitor fire growth and clear roads in preparation for firing opportunities to protect identified values at risk.
Due to the Scorpion and Little Devil Fires, the Breitenbush Hotsprings Area remains in Level 1 (Ready) evacuation status. Contact Marion County Emergency Management for additional information at (503) 588-5108 or visit http://www.co.marion.or.us/.
Areas of the Willamette National Forest including campgrounds, roads, and trails (including portions of the Pacific Crest Trail) are under fire related closure orders. Visit the Willamette National Forest website or call (541) 225-6350 to learn more and “know before you go.”
Sgt. Nathan Garibay, emergency services manager with the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office, issued the following notices Wednesday afternoon:
Level 2 (Set) Evacuation Notice for the following areas:
Areas surrounding Elk Lake and Hosmer Lake, including: Elk Lake Resort, Elk Lake CG, Point CG, Little Fawn CG, Mallard Marsh CG, Sunset View Day Use Area, Beach Day Use Area, and Quinn Meadows Horse Camp.
Level 2: Means "GET SET" to evacuate. You must prepare to leave at a moment's notice. This level indicates there is significant danger to your area, and residents should either voluntary relocate to a shelter or with family and friends outside of the affected area, or if choosing to remain, to be ready to evacuate at a moment's notice. Residents MAY have time to gather necessary items, but doing so is at their own risk. This may be the only notice you receive. Emergency services cannot guarantee that they will be able to notify you if conditions rapidly deteriorate. Area media services will be asked to broadcast periodic updates.
Level 1 (Ready) for the following areas:
Areas surrounding Lava Lake including:
Areas surrounding Lava Lake and Little Lava Lake including: Lava Lake Resort, Lave Lake CG, and Little Lava Lake CG
Level 1: Means "BE READY" for potential evacuation. Residents should be aware of the danger that exists in their area, monitor emergency services websites and local media outlets for information. This is the time for preparation and precautionary movements of persons with special needs, mobile property and (under certain circumstances) pets and livestock. If conditions worsen, emergency services personnel may contact you via an emergency notification system.
Current maps including evacuation areas can be found at this location.
The Sheriff's Office will continue to coordinate with the United States Forest Service and the incident management team assigned to the fire.