Contact: Public Information Officer: Peri Suenram
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Special Holiday Message: Please be cautious with fireworks
What: Galena Zone Fires
Location: A series of fires on both sides of the Yukon River within the Galena Fire Management Zone and the western end of the Tanana Zone. The major firefighting efforts at this time are concentrated on 5 fires on the south side of the Yukon River below the village of Ruby and on another 2 fires on both banks of the river near the village of Nulato.
Fire Names: Nulato #458, Kaiyuh #351, Ruby Slough #423, Sulatna #429, Bruno Creek #479, Big Creek Two #533 and Eldorado #576.
Size: Approximately 100,000 acres.
Nulato Fires: Fire fighting efforts in the Nulato area were focused on continuing mop up near the river in old town on Thursday. In addition, helicopter bucket work focused on the northeast and eastern fingers of the fire taking advantage of the cooler weather. The crews in Koyukuk finished the fuel break around the village cemetery on Koyukuk Mountain. The local BLM Fire Management Officer, Incident Commander, and Operations Section Chief reviewed operations in Koyukuk and Nulato to assure fire suppression and mop up activities are being effectively conducted. Delivery of fresh food boxes from Alaska Fire Services in Fairbanks was made to both Koyukuk and Nulato.
Ruby Fires: The Bruno Creek Fire showed some group torching around Boston Dome and east of Poorman Road on Thursday. The Ruby area is experiencing smokey conditions because of higher humidity and lack of wind. Smokejumpers accomplished structure protection around a remote cabin near Deer Creek, along the south bank of the Yukon River. Jumpers were also transported to another cabin near the Nowitna River. The Big Creek Fire exhibited slight growth on its west and southeast sides. Structure assessments along the Yukon River between Ruby and the mouth of the Nowitna River are being accomplished. Another communications repeater was installed north of Kathaleen Island and will enhance communications for firefighters working on cabin protection. The public is urged to limit travel on Poorman Road to minimize conflicts with the firefighting forces.
Other Alaska Fires: Alaska Fire Service personnel have estimated 2.2 million acres have burned in Alaska so far in 2015.
There is a Notice to Airmen in effect for a 25 mile radius around the village of Ruby.
Weather: Humidity will be in the 49 to 55% range today. Fire behavior analysts have found that 39% and lower is the zone which supports large fire growth, so fire behavior may be muted again on Friday. Isolated thunderstorms will continue to be a possibility. Conditions will be cloudy with a chance for showers and temperatures will be in the 46-62 degree range. The weather forecast calls for a warming trend by late Saturday or Sunday bringing warm temperatures and low relative humidity back to the Middle Yukon area.