There are two new fires in Yellowstone National Park, and both Maple and Buffalo have grown substantially. Crews are now referring to all five active fires as the Buffalo Complex.
According to a Yellowstone press release, yesterday afternoon, crews discovered a fire burning approximately four miles north of West Yellowstone and one-fourth of a mile inside park boundaries. Crews are calling it the Boundary Fire. Currently, Boundary Fire measures 50 acres; its cause is unknown. Firefighters and smokejumpers are on scene, and are receiving air support from two helicopters dropping water and two CL-215 airplanes (or “scoopers”).
Meanwhile, later in the afternoon Monday, August 15, crews discovered a fire burning just north of West Thumb junction, within half-a-mile of the Grand Loop Road. Termed the Thumb Fire, crews are working to immediately suppress the fire. Seven smokejumpers are on the scene, with a helicopter providing water drops as needed. Currently, Thumb Fire measures one acre.
Maple Fire has surged in size overnight, according to a Yellowstone press release. Fire management officials estimate the Maple Fire (burning eight miles northeast of West Yellowstone) is now burning on 5,000 acres, ten times what it was just yesterday.
Buffalo Fire, burning five miles northeast of Tower Junction, has grown to 350 acres. We previously reported that Buffalo Fire was 97 acres in size.
Fawn Fire, meanwhile, has not grown from 936 acres.
Smoke from the Maple and Buffalo Fires is visible both in an out of the Park, especially in the north and west portions.
Stage 1 Fire Restrictions are still in place for Yellowstone National Park. Below is the list of trails and campsites currently closed due to fire activity, according to a Yellowstone press release:
• Gneiss Creek Trail from the Gneiss Creek Trailhead (WK7) to Seven Mile Bridge Trailhead (WK8).
• Bighorn Pass trail eastbound at the junction of the cut-off trial to the Fawn Pass trail.
• Bighorn Pass trail westbound at Bighorn Pass.
• Fawn Pass trail eastbound at the junction of the cut-off trail to the Big Horn Pass trail.
• Fawn Pass trail westbound at campsite 1F2.
• The cut-off trail between Bighorn and Fawn Pass trails is open.
Currently, no roads in Yellowstone National Park are closed, and no visitor facilities (both NPS- and concessionaire-operated) are closed.