Burn and Firework Bans Still in Effect for Southwest

Jun 30, 2015

Smokejumpers sent to Paul's Creek fire; Kokwok Fire is nearly out; new fire burns NE of Twin Hills

On Tuesday afternoon smokejumpers were sent to the 8,500-acre fire at Paul's Creek northeast of Naknek.
Credit Alaska Interagency Coordination Center

Despite a bit of rain and humidity in recent days, the state says Southwest Alaska is still in extreme wildfire danger. There are 75 fires burning in Southwest as of Tuesday morning.

Division of Forestry spokesman Francis Mitchell says firefighters responded to the 8500-acre fire Paul’s Creek NE of Naknek Tuesday:

"Some smokejumpers flew down there today…they were gonna look at dwellings that were south of that fire about 9-10 miles and maybe start doing some site protection around them in case the fire did keep coming down."

Mitchell says the fire NE of Aleknagik near the Kokwok river is nearly out.

"I don’t think it’s been officially declared yet, but there’s no activity on it."

Fish and Wildlife provided an update on two fires in the Togiak Valley. Togiak refuge deputy manager Allen Miller says the fire upriver from Togiak has slowed but is still moving on the north end.

"But the south end - which is the edge closer to the village of Togiak - has pretty much died out along the Togiak River and Gechiak Creek, where it kinda burnt itself up and died out in the alders and willows."

Miller says that fire has not jumped east of the river.

"It’s dying out pretty quickly. Things could certainly change, but things are looking better today."

Miller reports another fire started Monday night about 5 miles northeast of Twin Hills.

"It’s estimated to be only about 5-8 acres, is burning pretty slowly, and they received a little bit of rain today, it’s starting to rain this afternoon."

Showers are forecast in Bristol Bay for Wednesday afternoon, and then no rain again until Saturday.

Though the burn ban and firework suspension have been lifted elsewhere in the state, both are still in effect for Southwest Alaska until further notice. 

Contact the author at hannah@kdlg.org.