Desert Ridge Wildland Fire continues burning at Crater Lake National Park
Crater Lake Institute
July 21, 2009
By Robert Mutch
A 180 acre wildland fire in Crater Lake National Park is closer to being contained. The fire began during a July 3rd lightning
storm, is now forty percent contained and a 100 percent containment date is estimated for mid-August. The fire is located about one mile west of the Pumice Desert, Oregon.
Committed to the fire are a Type three Incident Commander, Public Information Officer, Resource Advisor, Union Hot Shots, and
the Whiskeytown National Recreation Area (NRA) Wildland Fire Module.
According to July 21st fire update information from the
National Park Service Fire and Aviation website, "Fire crews continue to monitor and patrol containment lines. Due to a fire weather watch and
warning and high winds helicopters were used to cool portions of the fire down. The fire made a significant run in the late afternoon through a large component of beetle killed
lodgepole pine. Spot fires were picked up by the firefighters."
View larger map
1. Desert Ridge Wildland Fire
2. Whitney Wildland Fire
The last 24 hours of fire activity are described as being a "low intensity underburn creeping downhill on the south side of
Desert Ridge. As the fire entered the lower section of the project into the Lodgepole Pine component fire behavior became more intense and many lodgepole pine trees torched." The
primary overstory (forest/tree cover) is primarily of hemlock and fir.
The overall strategy is to keep the fire south of the southeast portion of Desert Ridge and keep it east of the scree slopes
located west of the fire. Also, to keep the fire north of the pumice desert and east of Desert Ridge. Fire Management Officials at Crater Lake National Park are currently managing the
fire for forest health by allowing it to burn within the contained area. This permits lightning-caused fires to play their natural ecological role within wilderness to the extent
possible. This helps to protect forest ecosystems and reintroduce fire to mimic natural fire cycles.
Smoke from the fire is described as "being lifted toward the northeast away from the main developed area and caldera. Late in
the afternoon and early evening there was a moderate amount of smoke in the northern section of the caldera."
For more information contact Greg Funderburk at
Crater Lake National Park
Desert Ridge Fire smoke plume, July 20, 2009, Desert Ridge Fire, Crater Lake National
Park, photo by National Park Service --
Run through beetle killed timber, July 20, 2009, Desert Ridge Fire, Crater Lake National Park,
photo by National Park Service --
Blacklining operation on the
Desert Ridge Fire, Crater Lake National Park, Oregon, National Park Service photo --
Evening Glow on the Desert Ridge Fire, Crater Lake National Park, Oregon, National Park Service photo --
Evening Glow on the Desert Ridge Fire, Crater Lake National Park, Oregon,
National Park Service photo --