It’s hot and smoky today in Susanville, courtesy of a pair of wildfires burning in Plumas County. Winds shifted early today sending the column of smoke from the still uncontrolled Chips Fire into our area.
The Peak Fire is burning on the Beckwourth Ranger District on the Plumas National Forest about 15 miles northeast of Portola.
According to this morning’s Forest Service update, crews worked on the fire last night securing the north-west side of the fire and personnel today will be holding and improving existing fire lines and mopping up 300 feet in.
Interior pockets of unburned fuel may continue to flare up during the afternoon hours over the next couple of days.
Crews continue to remain vigilant for any additional fire movement that may develop during day and night shifts. The Incident Management Team, according to the USFS plans to transfer command of the fire back to the local unit at 6:00p.m. this evening.
According to a fire update issued overnight by the Forest Service, the fire is located approximately 2 miles northwest and upslope of Belden and Highway 70, between Chips Creek and Indian Creek. At last estimate the fire had burned over 1,000 acres in steep, rocky and generally inaccessible terrain that is hampering fire fighting efforts.
The wildfire is currently 10% contained with estimated containment, according to the Forest Service, of August 6th.
Fourteen 20 person handcrews, 6 engines, and helicopters and airtankers plus numerous other firefighters are on scene. Four residences were threatened last night and structure protection was put in place.
Ben Lomond, Indian Springs and Pacific Crest trails are closed from Highway 70 to the Plumas/Lassen National Forest boundary. Forest Orders are posted on inciweb. The fire may be bypassed by hiking Highway 70 or catching a bus with Plumas Transit to Chester, CA (weekdays only).
According to Forest Service update rising temperature and lowering humidity hampered firefighting efforts yesterday afternoon and the fire became extremely active to the north/northeast and is putting out lots of smoke. Air tankers and helicopters have been assisting ground crews. The fire remains north of Highway 70 and between Chips and Indian Creeks.
Command of the fire will be transitioned to a Type 2 Incident Management team today, August 1st.
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