Ridge fire 75 percent contained, park says

Hurricane Ridge Road remained open on Monday, Sept. 4, even as Olympic National Park staff continue to combat several fires caused by lightning strikes last week.

The fire burning about 2,000 feet below the Hurricane Ridge parking lot was 75 percent contained and remained at 4 acres, the park said in a press release on Sept. 3.

“There was minimal fire activity (Sunday),” the park stated. “Hoses and sprinklers have been used to prevent the fire from spreading to the west. Hurricane Ridge Road will remain open to the public.”

The Eagle Point Fire about 5 miles down Obstruction Point Road grew from 50 acres to 60 acres on Sunday, but it poses no threat to life or property, the park said. Obstruction Point Road remains closed for the safety of visitors and firefighters.

A smoke plume from the Eagle Point Fire has been visible at times from Sequim and Port Angeles, depending on the weather, the park said.

“The Eagle Point Fire is showing moderate activity with single tree torching and burning trees killed by the balsam wooly adelgid, an exotic pest that is steadily killing off subalpine-fir trees,” the park said.

Firefighters are using bucket drops to prevent the fire from moving north of Obstruction Point Road and over the ridge and will monitor growth in other directions.

There are six active fires in Olympic National Park, all of which were started by a series of lightning strikes last week.

The Diamond Mountain Fire northeast of Anderson Pass is currently at 25 acres, burning in wilderness with no threat to structures or property. That fire hit rocks to the northeast and is burning slowly downhill to the south and west and will continue to be monitored.

The Martins Lake Fire and Delabarre Fire near Mount Christie are both an acre or less and showed minimal activity Sunday.

The Low Divide Fire north of the Forks Quinault Drainage grew to 8 acres and is burning west toward Seattle Creek, the park said. A crew will be inserted on Tuesday to monitor the fire and ensure there are no public safety concerns.

National Forest Service personnel are also combating a fire east of the Buckhorn Wilderness in the Olympic National Forest. Estimated at 2 acres, the Tunnel Creek Fire is smoldering on steep slopes.

Rappellers, a helicopter and a bulldozer are currently engaged with additional resources en route, the park said, and firefighters are working to create a handline around the perimeter of the fire.

Visitors are asked to avoid the area for public and firefighter safety.

The National Weather Service is forecasting cooler temperatures and light rains in the early part of this week, with temperatures rising toward the weekend.