GRANGEVILLE – The Jones Creek Fire is burning east of the Snake River on public lands administered by the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest, about seven miles north of Pittsburg Landing. It was reported early in the morning on September 4th, 2022. The cause is under investigation.
Successful suppression actions have resulted in slowing the fire’s progression and limiting impacts on values at risk. The fuels in the area are composed of primarily grass, with timber stringers. A wet summer early in the season has resulted in an abundance of grass, and recent hot, dry unstable conditions lead to rapid rates of fire spread experienced during the initial attack. Aerial resources and ground crews have been successful in suppression actions.
Firefighters have completed indirect contingency dozer and hand lines on the east and south side of the fire where terrain and fuels permit, which could be used if the fire grew significantly in those directions. Dozers are staged at Pittsburg Landing if needed to reinforce fire lines. The fire has burned to the Snake River along the western edge.
Today, firefighters are looking for opportunities to strengthen the contingency line on the east flank in the Camp Howard Ridge area, and are assessing structure protection needs if the fire moves north into the Getta Creek drainage. The fire has not increased in acreage in the past 48 hours. Some limited pockets of heat remain in isolated areas of heavy fuel. Firefighters will keep a close eye on a pocket of heat in a stringer of timber just west of Fir Ridge on the eastern edge of the fire, and will use a helicopter to drop water on the area as needed.
The weather today will bring a wind shift to the north and northeast, with ridgetop gusts to 20 mph. Temperatures will remain warm, in the 80–85-degree range, with very low relative humidity in the 9-13% range. These conditions will tend to favor fire growth toward the south.
Along with the much larger Double Creek Fire burning west of the Snake River, these fires have periodically filled the Snake River Canyon with smoke. There is no immediate threat to river travel or boating facilities. River users are asked to remain aware of the status of both fires.
Closures/Restrictions: As of August 5th, 2022, the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest has entered fire restrictions that prohibit building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire or stove fire except within designated campfire rings at a developed recreation site.
Evacuations: Homes in the Getta Creek and Deer Creek areas remain in a Level 1 “Get Ready” status. There is a lot of fire season ahead of us. Please do all you can to prevent new fires.