Chugach National Forest Fire Suppression Efforts Reinforced on Stetson Creek & Juneau Lake Fires

Anchorage 8:30 p.m. – Two lightning-caused wildfires that ignited Tuesday evening, June 16 on Chugach National Forest – Kenai Peninsula remain active.

The Juneau Creek fire is an estimated 100 acres. Structure protection for cabins is in place. Helicopter support was utilized to target areas with the most active fire and firefighters have set-up hoses and water pumps and monitored the fire’s behavior.

The Stetson Creek fire has grown to approximately 400 acres. No structures are in the path of the fire at this time. Volunteer fire departments from Seward, Bear Creek, Cooper Landing and Moose Pass are available for structure protection if needed for businesses in the Cooper Landing area. Three air tankers are working the fire.

An incident management team from Oregon has arrived and will take command of both fires. Two out-of state crews also arrived today, June 18 and will be deployed to the fires. Transition from local Incident Commanders to the Oregon Team 4 will occur Friday, June 19 in the late afternoon.

Where there is fire, there is smoke and high relative humidity increases the smoke. Visitors, local residents and aviators should anticipate varying levels of smoke in the forest. Wildfire smoke information is available at http://dec.alaska.gov/air/smokemain.html. Travelers are reminded to use caution when driving through smoky conditions by driving with headlights on, slowing down and watching for fire equipment and firefighters. Information on travel conditions and fire-related road closures can be found at http://511.alaska.gov. Smoke can pose health concerns for the public. Residents are encouraged to visit the Protect Yourself from Smoke website http://www.cdc.gov/Features/Wildfires/

Weather conditions are expected to be warm and dry for the next seven days, so exercise caution in the outdoors and report any fires or smoke.

Cooper Creek Campground and Bean Creek and Stetson Creek Trail are closed to use. Resurrection Pass South trail is closed to Devil’s Creek junction. This includes the Trout Lake, Romig, Juneau Lake, and Swan Lake cabins. Resurrection Pass North trail is open and cabin rentals are still valid. Most areas of the Chugach National Forest are open, so if you are heading outside for the weekend, you can hike on the trails on the upper Kenai Peninsula or drive to Portage and take in the sights.

Visit www.akfireinfo.com for the latest updates on fires across the state.  More information and updates on the Stetson Creek and Juneau Lake fires can be found at www.inciweb.nwcg.gov or www.fs.usda.gov/chugach. For general fire information, call (907) 743-9500 Anchorage.

Media Contact: Mona Spargo, 907-743-9572, mspargo@fs.fed.us

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