Alturas, Calif., -- Between July 23 and July 25, the Modoc National Forest, Lava Beds National Monument, and the Clear Lake and Klamath National Wildlife Refuges received thousands of lightning strikes. NorCal Team 2 has an area of responsibility for all fires west of Highway 395 (excluding the Warner Mountains) and 24 hour coverage is in place. New fires are still being discovered over a nearly 1.3 million square acre area. Difficulties in access to these areas and sage grass fuels create the potential for rapid fire spread.
High temperatures and low humidity levels are expected to continue through the weekend. These conditions will influence fire behavior and there is a possibility of extreme activity while conditions persist. Fires in the #JulyModocComplex experienced varying levels of activity overnight.
The Cove Fire grew an estimated 1,900 acres yesterday, but overnight it demonstrated much lower activity. It is currently at an estimated 1,948 acres. Fire crews were able to conduct suppression tactics directly on the eastern edge of the Cove Fire, and tied firelines into existing road systems which should assist firefighters by providing easier access today. This fire is not currently directly threatening any structures, but residents in Stone Coal Valley were issued a pre-evacuation by the Modoc County Sheriff yesterday as a precautionary measure. Firefighters will be aided again today by aircraft.
The Lake Fire, directly southeast of Clear Lake, held well yesterday and did not have much activity overnight; it is now 4,489 acres. The Steele Fire, north and east of Clear Lake, showed considerable growth yesterday and last night; it is now at approximately 11,615 acres. No structures have been reported damaged or destroyed. Other fire areas on the northeastern section of this complex were active overnight, and fire crossed FS Road 48N70 with an approximately 150 acre slopover. The Rimrock cluster, located just south of the Oregon border, have grown into one fire estimated at 1,492 acres.
While three new fires were discovered yesterday, crews kept them to only a few acres. Additionally, numerous small fires on the Modoc National Forest (NF) were called contained or out.
While no roads or trails in the Modoc NF are currently closed, residents and visitors in the area should be aware of the potentially dangerous fire conditions and increased fire vehicle traffic on roadways. Fire restrictionsare in affect for the entire Modoc NF.
To view more information about this incident, visit https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5415/.
To view a downloadable pdf of this update, click here.