Boot, southwest of Walker

In Contained California Fires by YubaNet

support

Share this Post

  • Incident Name: Boot, southwest of Walker
  • State: CA
  • Lead Agency: HTF
  • Size (acres): 6,974
  • Percent Contained: 100%
  • Estimate of Containment: Sept. 16, 2018
  • Personnel: 319
  • Structures Destroyed: 0

Boot, Humboldt-Toiyabe NF. Transfer of command from IMT 2 (Bird) back to the local unit will occur on 9/16. Nine miles southwest of Walker, CA. Timber and brush. Moderate fire behavior with isolated torching, backing and creeping. Communication and energy infrastructure threatened. Road, area and trail closures in effect.

September 16, 2018 at 9:05 AM

The Boot Fire, located in the eastern Sierra Mountains on the Bridgeport Ranger District of the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, was called 100% contained September 15. A Burned Area Emergency Response Team began assessing the severity of the burned area and potential effects of the fire Friday. Smoke from the interior of the fire may be visible for several days, but does not pose any danger for motorists in the vicinity.

Firefighters were protecting:

Residences and other private properties in the immediate area, including the Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center;
Critical communication sites and power lines;
Unburned islands of sagebrush to preserve existing sage-grouse habitat and natural seed bank – using 150,000 gallons of fire retardant to achieve this goal;
Riparian vegetation in the Mill Creek watershed and important Lahontan cutthroat trout habitat.

Firefighters successfully met these goals:

Kept public and firefighter safety a priority;
Kept the fire west of Swauger Creek, south of Deep Creek, east of the Mountain Warfare Training Center, and north of Devil’s Gate.

Firefighters are working to repair suppression repair damages by:

Pulling back displaced vegetation and duff onto bare firelines;
Installing water bars and other erosion controls;
Ensuring protection of natural and cultural resources;
Reducing visual impacts;
Maintaining the productivity of the land.

You can help firefighters by preventing wildfires. Here’s how:

Obey local fire restrictions:
No fires, charcoal fires or woodstoves,
Campfires ONLY in designated campgrounds with campfire structures installed,
Pressurized or bottled fuel stoves, lanterns and heaters are allowed, provided they are used in cleared areas,
Smoking outside an enclosed vehicle is prohibited.
Avoid dragging safety chains that throw sparks.
Ensure off road vehicles have spark arrestors.
DO NOT PARK ON DRY GRASS!

September 14, 2018 at 8:34 AM

It has taken firefighters 10 days to contain 98% of the Boot Fire. The remaining open line is in the northern reaches of the fire area. Very steep slopes and thick timber made it unsafe for firefighters to work, thus delaying containment.

Hand crews and an excavator are completing the last bit of suppression repair work today. This work helps prevent erosion, helps protect natural and cultural resources from long term damages, reduces the visual scarring and maintains the productivity of the landscape. This repair work will also help vegetation grow back next spring.

Hand crews are working hard to remove and wrap hose before cold weather sets in and begins freezing equipment. Camp crews are busy rolling and packaging the hose which will be sent back to the Great Basin Supply Cache in Boise, Idaho.

The Boot Fire is assisting a new fire in Utah by sending several hand crews and engines to support it. Most resources not reassigned will be released home to rest and potentially go out to support other fires.

The Incident Command Post in Walker, California, will break down Saturday. Great Basin Team 5 would like to express our appreciation to the Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center and the communities of Walker, Colville and Bridgeport for their patience, generosity and assistance throughout the duration of this incident.

Weather: Windy conditions in the valleys and lower elevations will persist today. A trough of lower pressure will remain over the fire area, resulting in strong winds and dry conditions. Winds will be strongest on the ridgetops, pushing 35 mph.

Forest Closure: The Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest is revising the Forest Closure Order ahead of the bear and deer hunting season. The order will shrink to the Fire’s footprint and allow vehicles to travel through the fire area; however, there will be no stopping along roadways. The Forest will announce the new closure today.

Evacuations/ Road Closures: There are no evacuation notices in effect. The Burcham Flat Road (FS 031) will open to through traffic only this afternoon.

September 13, 2018 at 8:51 AM

Two days of sustained high winds maxing over 40 miles per hour has not adversely impacted the Boot Fire. Firefighters are calling it 95% contained today. The remaining uncontained fire area is in the northwestern section above Bootleg Canyon, where it is stubbornly holding a small bit of heat.

Firefighters have been ensuring high winds do not blow any embers outside containment lines. They are also backhauling supplies and removing flagging, garbage and other debris generated from suppression activities. This activity will continue through Friday. A transfer of command back to the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forrest will occur Saturday morning.

As firefighters work to complete the remaining containment lines, other firefighters are working on suppression repair activities. Suppression repair is an important final step of managing wildland areas affected by wildfires. Over the next few days, firefighters will install waterbars, pull back berms and scatter vegetation back across containment lines. This work is intended to help control surface water flows, minimize and control erosion and reduce the visual impacts to the landscape.

Weather: Winds will be calmer than the red flag conditions of the past two days, but still present. As the system passes, temperatures will begin to cool. This will temper the very dangerous fire conditions of the past several days. Air quality remains GOOD across the vicinity of the fire and Antelope Valley and should remain GOOD for the remainder of the week. This will be the final air quality report. They are online at: https://www.gbuapcd.org/cgi-bin/fireViewer?recID=42.

Today: There are no major threats at this time, allowing firefighters to focus on the remaining hard-to-reach areas of Bootleg Canyon. High winds the past few days have prevented firefighters from making significant progress in the area due to dangerous overhead dead trees. Very little heat is visible; however firefighters are still working the area to ensure it is out.

The Incident Management Team is beginning to release resources now that wind is no longer a serious concern. These resources will be reassigned to assist other fires or be released home after a long fire year.

Evacuations/ Road Closures: There are no evacuation notices in effect. The Burcham Flat Road (FS 031) remains closed to all non-fire traffic.

September 12, 2018 at 7:58 AM

A dry frontal system will be moving across the Boot Fire over the next three days, bringing very strong winds. While facing red flag conditions, firefighters are working hard to ensure no sparks or heat escape containment lines during the two-day event that will test the firefighters’ work and potentially prevent aircraft supporting fire personnel from flying.

The National Weather Service issued a red flag warning for very high winds and extremely dry conditions in effect today through Wednesday. Under these conditions, any new fire starts that may occur will demonstrate extreme fire behavior, create dust devils and produce dust.

Please help firefighters by being especially cautious with anything that may cause a spark. The Boot Fire is producing very little smoke, keeping air quality GOOD across Antelope Valley. Air quality reports are online at: https://www.gbuapcd.org/cgi-bin/fireViewer?recID=42.Containment increased to 62% Monday. Crews are turning over logs and spraying water to drench stump holes and other hot areas. This has successfully kept the fire from growing. The fire’s footprint remains 6,961 acres. Interior islands of timber can still flare up. With significant wind gusts possibly reaching 60-70 miles per hour, firefighters are watching for any new starts outside containment lines. Areas of concern for firefighters are in the northwest flank above Bootleg Canyon and the Burcham Flat areas.

The Eastern Sierra ATV and UTV Jamboree is taking place in Walker, California, September 11-15. As visitors arrive for this outdoor event, traffic will increase along Hwy 395. Please drive carefully and be aware of these machines sharing the roadways.

September 9, 2018 at 9:04 AM

The Mono County Sheriff’s Office lifted all evacuation notices for residents and structures in the Fales Hot Springs, Devil’s Gate Pass and Swauger Creek areas Saturday evening, September 8. Residents need to remain aware of firefighters and equipment accessing the fire area and stay prepared to leave if conditions change. Leavitt Meadows Campground, Leavitt Meadows Pack Station and Sonora Bridge Campground are also OPEN. Campgrounds and day use areas within for Forest Area Closure remain CLOSED. These include Shingle Mill, Chris Flat, and Bootleg Campgrounds.

The evacuated Marines from the Mountain Warfare Training Center will return to base Monday, September 10; however, the Marines currently assisting the Incident Management Team will continue their work providing critical information and airfield support.

Forest Closure: To protect and ensure firefighter and public safety, the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest issued a closure order within and around the Boot Fire burned area September 8th. The public should avoid National Forest System lands north of California State Route 108 from Sonora Bridge to the Junction of U.S. Route 395; north of Route 395 from Sonora Junction and Pimental Meadows, west of Swauger Creek due north to the junction of Forest Roads 067 and 089; from that junction due west to the junction of Burcham Flat Road/Forest Road 031 at the Forest Boundary, east of Mill Canyon Road due south to the junction Terry Canyon Road. From that junction, the closure includes Mill Canyon Road (Forest Road 042) and NFS lands to the east to Route 395. The closure continues due south on Forest Road 023 to Sonora Bridge. See the Closure Order and map, posted on the Forest’s website for details https://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/htnf/alerts-notices.

Summary: The fire grew an additional 25 acres yesterday. Containment increased 36% yesterday, bringing the current contained fire perimeter area to 39%.

The focus of suppression efforts are shifting to the northern and western fire flanks as the southern and eastern flanks become contained.

Weather: Another pretty day over Sonora Pass is on tap for Sunday. Ridgetop winds will be calmer today, peaking to 20 mph. This declining threat will make it harder for spot fires to establish. Warm and dry conditions will prevail however, allowing smoke from burning interior islands and other active fire areas to be visible, especially in the afternoons. Air quality reports are online at: https://www.gbuapcd.org/cgi-bin/fireViewer?recID=42.

Today: Along the high elevation western flank, helicopters are delivering pumps, hoses and other water-handling supplies into ridgetop helispots. This will assist firefighters with installing an extensive network of hoses they will use to extinguish heat that is smoldering and occasionally torching in the thick understory.

Firefighters are working in the heavily timbered, inaccessible north and western flanks extinguishing heat to ensure there the fire does not reignite and threaten the Sweetwater Mountain Range. This work will take several days.

On the south and eastern flanks, firefighters are carefully looking for hot spots 100 feet within the fire perimeter.

Saturday, this group of firefighters also assisted in putting out a tree hit by lightning. The fire grew to a 1/10 acre in Pickel Meadow before it was declared out that night. They will again be ready to respond to new fire starts if any occur.

Evacuations/Road Closures: There are no mandatory evacuation notices. The Burcham Flat Road (FS 031) remains closed to all non-fire traffic.

September 7, 2018 at 9:00 AM

Hot and windy conditions are creating extreme fire behavior on the Boot Fire that is burning nine miles southwest of Walker, California. It is moving most rapidly to the east towards Swauger Creek and to the north on Bootleg Mountain. An infrared flight took place last night that captured the fire size is 6,873 acres, but the fire is now 0% contained. The fire is under investigation and road closures and evacuation notices remain in effect, with no changes to closures. A map of the road closures and alternative routes is online at https://bit.ly/2oNqXtt

Firefighters’ goal is to keep the fire footprint as small as possible. This includes keeping the fire west of Swauger Creek, south of Deep Creek, east of the Mountain Warfare Training Center and north of Devil’s Gate. In the event the fire does move, engine crews are assessing structures in the Swauger Creek Area to identify homes and other infrastructure to protect. No structures have been destroyed or damaged since it started September 4.

Active fire on southwest side of Boot Fire. USFS photo

Southwest winds will increase around 2pm today, producing another day of active fire behavior. A transfer of Command from a Type 3 Incident Management team to a larger Type 2 Incident Management Team, led by Kim Martin, occurred this morning to support additional resources that are arriving to support the fire. For Fire Information, please call: 208-495-4228.

Weather: A dry air mass building this weekend will increase temperatures and winds and make conditions even drier. This holds the potential to create extreme fire behavior and a visible smoke column. While air quality remains GOOD over the Boot Fire, air quality reports for the Boot Fire are online at: https://www.gbuapcd.org/cgi-bin/fireViewer?recID=42.

Today: Air support includes seven helicopters and two CL415 water scoopers. They are in use to slow the fire’s growth until firefighters and heavy equipment can construct containment lines. There is no additional growth occurring on the southwest flank where the Mountain Warfare Training Center is threatened. Firefighters are working directly along the fire’s edge to contain this portion of the fire’s flank. They are working their way uphill from the Walker River.

On the southeast flank where growth is most aggressive, the fire is now near Swauger Creek. Pilots dropped extensive retardant Thursday to slow its progression. Firefighters are working with aircraft to develop a containment line that connects to the Burcham Road to keep the fire from establishing in Swauger Creek.

On the northeast flank, the fire is burning on both sides of Burcham Flat Road. Firefighters, supported by helicopters, are working directly along the fire’s edge to contain it.

On the northwest flank, spot fires are occurring in Grouse Meadows; however, the fire is having a difficult time establishing in this area due to stands of aspen trees. Handcrews are extinguishing these spots as they discover them. They are working down a ridge toward the Walker River Corridor.

Road Closure: The Boot Fire burning 15 miles northwest of Bridgeport, CA and remains active along the Highway 395 corridor. For firefighter and public safety, the following road closures are in effect.

From the Nevada-California Stateline, Highway 395 remains OPEN through Walker, California.

Highway 395 remains CLOSED from the junction of Eastside Lane and Highway 395 in Walker, California extending to the north end of Bridgeport, California.

State Route 108 (Sonora Pass) remains closed to all east bound traffic to Kennedy Meadows.

Mountain Warfare Training Center and Leavitt Meadows Pack Station is accessible to employees only.

Available Detour

Both towns of Bridgeport and Walker are accessible to travelers, with through traffic detoured into Smith Valley at Holbrook Junction via Nevada State Route 338 and California State Route 182.

Evacuations: A mandatory evacuation remains in effect for residents and structures in the area of Fales Hot Springs, Devil’s Gate Pass and Swauger Creek, and for the Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center. Residents are encouraged to sign-up for Mono County Emergency Alert system “Code Red” by registering online at https://monosheriff.org/sheriff/page/codered-emergency-alert-system

September 6, 2018 at 10:55 AM

The Boot Fire is burning in steep, rocky terrain approximately 9 miles southwest of Walker and 15 miles northwest of Bridgeport, California. The fire is currently 6,706 acres with 3% containment. There are currently 400 personnel on the fire. Thunderstorms are expected to decrease slightly today, however fire behavior continues to be extreme, with low humidity recovery and winds expected for the weekend.

Yesterday residents and campers were evacuated from recreation sites on Sonora Pass, including the Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center. A mandatory evacuation was put into effect by Mono County Sheriffs office utilizing the “Code Red” emergency notification system for Devil’s Gate Pass, Swauger Creek and Fales Hot Springs, four miles south of US Highway 395 and CA State Route 108 (Sonora Junction).

Today, fire crews will continue to improve containment lines using hand crews, dozers and aircraft to keep the fire west of Swauger Creek, South of Deep Creek, East of the Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center and North of Devils Gate.

Evacuations: A mandatory evacuation remains in effect for residents and structures in the area of Fales Hot Springs, Devil’s Gate Pass and Swauger Creek, and for the Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center. Residents are encouraged to sign-up for Mono County Emergency Alert system “Code Red” by registering online at https://monosheriff.org/sheriff/page/codered-emergency-alert-system

Road Closures: 395 remains closed from Eastside Lane south of Walker, California to the north end of Bridgeport, California. Both towns of Bridgeport and Walker are accessible to travelers, with through traffic detoured into Smith Valley at Holbrook Junction, Nevada State Route 208 in Nevada, approximately 4 miles north of the California/Nevada state line, to assist travelers that are looking to detour around the closure. Sonora Pass (CA SR 108) is closed at the Mono Tuolumne county line to US 395. Please continue to follow Caltrans for updates http://www.dot.ca.gov/d9/index.html.

Recreation Sites Closed: Bootleg, Chris Flat, Sonora Bridge, and Leavitt Meadows Campground/Trailhead, and Leavitt Meadows Pack Station. The Pacific Crest Trail is closed between CA SR 108 at Sonora Pass and Highway 4 at Ebbetts Pass.

September 5, 2018 at 4:18 PM

Evacuations have expanded from the Bootleg, Chris Flat and Sonora Bridge Campgrounds to now include the Leavitt Meadows Pack Station and Campground, the Marine Warfare Training Center and the Devil’s Gate area. Mono County Sheriff’s Office is evacuating residents and campers from the Sonora Pass area spanning approximately four miles south to include the community of Devil’s Gate. Ranchers are asked to be prepared to move livestock out of the area south of US 395 and CA SR 108 in the event evacuations are necessary.

CLOSURES:

The Pacific Crest Trail is closed between CA SR 108 at Sonora Pass and Highway 4 at Ebbetts Pass as a result of the Donnell Fire. The Boot Fire does not currently impact this trail, but the closure does impact recreationists on the Bridgeport Ranger District. See details on the trail closure here:

https://www.pcta.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Donnell-Fire-PCT-Closure-Orde-STF-16-2018-08_201808100850.pdf

Road closures now span US 395 beginning at Holbrook Junction (north of Topaz Lake) to Bridgeport, and CA SR 108 is closed from US 395 to the Tuolumne County line. Follow CalTrans District 9 for updates on road closures. Structures are threatened in the Burcham Flats area east of Walker Canyon, and Burcham Flats Road remains closed.