Smoke was visible yesterday over the Castle Fire as it grew an additional 662 acres while it established itself in unburned fuel east of Forest Road 226 in the Lookout Canyon area. Following four days in a row of no growth, the combination of increased daytime temperatures, light winds, no precipitation and available fuels were enough to encourage additional spread. Aerial ignitions and firing operations were also successfully conducted to help check and direct the fire's movement through the canyon.
Mastication work along Forest Road 226 continues and firing operations along the fire's southeastern perimeter are helping to fortify the control lines. Firefighters are making excellent progress and staying ahead of the fire, while ensuring that the firing operations are effective and conducted safely.
Today's weather forecast calls for no chance of rain, mostly sunny on Monday with no precipitation. Under these favorable weather conditions, the Castle Fire is expected to continue working its way through Lookout Canyon towards Dugway. Smoke will be visible as fire behavior increases during the peak burning period which is mid-day to late afternoon.
Soon after the Castle Fire started on July 12th, fire managers pre-identified the 19,632-acre planning area where the lightning-caused wildfire would be allowed to fulfill its natural role within a fire-dependent ecosystem. The fire has burned through 88% of the planning area, burning through a significant amount of dead and down trees and some mixed conifer species. By allowing the wildfire to naturally burn through this area, the ecosystem will become healthier and more resilient.
The Castle Fire poses no danger to structures or other local infrastructure.
A Closure Order remains in effect for the Castle Fire area: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/
CASTLE FIRE OVERVIEW
- Discovery Date: July 12, 2019.
- Cause: Lightning.
- Location (point of origin): Approximately 11 miles south of Jacob Lake, 3 miles west of Highway 67, and just east of Forest Road 761 near Oquer Canyon on the North Kaibab Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest.
- Current Resources: One crew, four engines, a helicopter, a dozer, four masticators, two feller bunchers, one skidder, and miscellaneous fire management personnel. Total personnel: approximately 90.
- Current Size: About 17,200 acres and it has spread across about 88% of the 19,632-acre planning area.
- Predicted Smoke Impacts: Smoke is expected to be visible from both the north and south rims of Grand Canyon National Park, Jacob Lake, Highway 67, Highway 89A, and Fredonia.
- Current Closures: Kaibab National Forest managers have implemented a temporary Closure Order for the Castle Fire area in order to provide for public and firefighter safety. For specific information about the Closure Order, please visit: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/
- Recent and Current Operations: Wildland fire crews plan to continue improving roads and other designated perimeters within which the fire can move. Current weather conditions may influence the use of firing operations which may be conducted as needed in order to strengthen control lines. A Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) is in place over the fire area.
Kaibab National Forest information is available through the following sources:
- Castle Fire Inciweb Page: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/
- Kaibab National Forest Website: www.fs.usda.gov/kaibab
- Twitter: www.twitter.com/KaibabNF
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/KaibabNF
- Flickr: http://bit.ly/CastleFire2019