After 10 days of dormancy, the Alum Fire near Mud Volcano came back to life thanks to favorable weather conditions and could force the closure of the Grand Loop Road between Canyon and Fishing Bridge.
The Alum Fire and the entire Druid Fire Complex has slowed down this past week; of the six fires in Yellowstone, three received rain on Friday and diminished. However, low relative humidity and abundance sunshine led to a resurrection of the Alum Fire near the Mud Volcano area after 10 days of dormancy. The forecast for today: continued sunny and dry weather, with even lower relative humidity. Firefighters may see greater activity in the fire.
The closest road corridor to the Alum fire is the Grand Loop Road between Canyon and Fishing Bridge. Sunday, the fire may approach Grand Loop Road in the afternoon. If smoke or fire renders the corridor unsafe, that section may require pilot cars or a temporary road closure. The detour for travel would be via Old Faithful, about a three-hour (85-mile) drive. Traffic would be redirected using electronic signs and park personnel posted at key intersections. These measures would be taken purely to enhance public safety. If the fire does not come near, the road will remain open. Notice of any changes is posted on the park’s travel information line: 307-344-2117.
Currently there are six fires under the Druid Fire Complex umbrella, impacting some 11,681 acres. Three of the fires, Snake, Passage and Alder, are fairly inactive due to recent rains. Alum and Druid retain some heat, and show smoke and an occasional burning tree on warm days, but haven’t grown or moved much in a few days. The Caldron Fire lit August 29 from a lightning strike east of the Yellowstone River and the Mud Volcano area.
The Caldron Fire, started by lightning last Thursday east of the Yellowstone River near Mud Volcano, was not showing smoke today. The Druid and Alder fires showed some smoke but did not grow.
Image of the Alum Fire from Aug. 26, as seen from Mud Volcano, courtesy of National Park Service.