Initial attack operations on the Forest Canyon Fire resulted in approximately 80 percent containment. Due to the terrain, fuel load and inaccessibility of the fire, there is still potential for growth. The crews working on suppression efforts were met with extreme hazards including steep terrain, falling trees, and uneven footing. Due to these hazards, one firefighter did sustain an injury which required medical attention. While the fire is continuing to be managed for full suppression, firefighter safety remains the priority for fire managers. Because of this, tomorrow’s efforts will include less ground crews, however air operations will continue using a Type 1 Chinook helicopter for water drops.
The Forest Canyon Fire is burning below Trail Ridge Road between and Rock Cut and Forest Canyon overlook, and is approximately 3 acres. Trail Ridge Road remains open unless fire conditions change. Upper Beaver Meadows Road is closed due to aviation operations.
Forest Canyon Fire is burning in mostly lodgepole pine forest, with 50 percent of the stand killed by recent insect infestations. This area of the Forest Canyon has not burned in the last 800 years. Fire behavior is being driven by steep terrain and fuel loads. The cause of the fire has not yet been determined. However, a thunderstorm with lightning moved through the Forest Canyon area Thursday afternoon.
Initial attack occurred on the Mirror Fire today by three firefighters who were flown in by helicopter. The Mirror Fire is located in the remote northern section of the park. Trail closures remain in effect for the Mirror Lake trail, from the junction with the Mummy Pass trail northbound to Mirror Lake. The Comanche Peak trail is closed from the park boundary southbound to Mirror Lake. Wilderness campsite closures include the Mirror Lake site and the Koenig stock site, and reservations for these backcountry sites are canceled until further notice.
Forest Canyon Fire August 31, 2018
Photo: Courtesy Estes Valley Fire Protection District