Central Fire Sparks West of Lake Village, Maple Fire Grows

Another fire has started in Yellowstone National Park, this time on the east side, as the National Weather Service issues another Red Flag Warning for the region.

In addition, Yellowstone’s South Entrance is still closed due to activity from the Berry Fire. According to Inciweb, Berry Fire now measures 12,378 acres and is burning on both sides of U.S. 191. Further, according to Inciweb, crews say they expect to contain it by October 1, 2016 at the earliest.

According to a Yellowstone press release, the Central Fire was reported Friday, August 26. It is nine miles west of Lake Village and two miles south of Hayden Valley, burning in a corner of the 2015 Spruce Fire. Crews say since it’s burning in territory previously burnt by the Spruce Fire, they don’t expect it go move east.

Central Fire is currently 0.1 acre in size. Crews say they will manage it under a “monitor and point-protection strategy.” There are no closures associated with Central Fire at this time.

Meanwhile, to the west, Maple Fire grew to 31,209 acres overnight. The interior of the fire continues to cool as activity proceeds on Maple Fire’s perimeter, with the most activity seen around Gneiss Creek. Crews are still working on a fuels reduction project on the fire’s west flank, closer to West Yellowstone. Boundary and Riverside Trails, along with the Old Airport Road, are closed at this time.

The West Entrance Road is still open at this time. According to the Yellowstone release, West Yellowstone residents and visitors should expect morning smoke “under a prevailing inversion pattern.”

Crews have completed a fuels reduction project at Madison Junction and have an additional project planned for Duck Creek. Crews are also planning “strategic burn out operations” near the Madison River as the Maple Fire approaches.

Buffalo Fire showed moderate growth Thursday and currently measures 3,024 acres. The Fire Behavior Assessment Team (FBAT) on-site are still installing sensors and deciphering sensor plots at this time.

Fawn Fire grew slightly to 1,922 acres. Crews have shifted their focus to the fire’s current growth pattern—on the south side of the Gallatin River. Crews say the topography and fuels available could contribute to a growth spurt over the next few days.

Higher temperatures, westerly winds, and lower humidity are expected over the next several days—conditions expected to spur fire growth.

All interior Park roads and visitor facilities, both NPS- and concessionaire-operated, are open at this time.

About Sean Reichard

Sean Reichard is the editor of Yellowstone Insider and author of Yellowstone Insider For Families 2017.

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