Chena Hotshots responding to mop up fire 23 miles north of Hughes

Photo of the Red Mountain Fire burning north of the Koyukuk River.
The Red Mountain Fire was spotted at about 1 p.m. on Monday, June 3 by BLM Alaska Fire Service Tanana Zone personnel aboard a fire detection flight after a rash of lightning was recorded in the area the day before. The fire was initially reported at 40 acres and burning in brush and black spruce. Photo by Brett Fairchild, BLM AFS

People in Allakaket will see an uptick in firefighting personnel and aircraft today when the BLM Alaska Fire Service Chena Interagency Hotshot Crew shuttles to the Red Mountain Fire (#166) located 39 miles to the southwest. The Chena Hotshots will take over mopping-up the lightning-caused fire, freeing eight smokejumpers for initial attack response if needed. The smokejumpers and two water-scooping Fire Boss aircraft responded yesterday and were able to knock down this 52-acre fire burning 23 miles north of Hughes. The fire is burning on the opposite of the Koyukuk River from the village and is not immediately threatening any structures, Native allotments or archeological sites. The fire is fuel- and terrain-driven and is burning mostly in brush and black spruce. The fire was spotted around 1 p.m. Monday by BLM Alaska Fire Service Tanana Zone personnel aboard a detection flight after lightning moved through the area the day before. Smokejumpers reported the fire is smoldering and holding heat under the trees. A helicopter will stage in Allakaket during the day while the Chena Hotshots spend the next several days mopping up the fire.

For more information, contact BLM Alaska Fire Service Public Affairs Specialist Beth Ipsen at eipsen@blm.gov or (907)356-5510.

Map of Red Mountain Fire burning about 23 miles northeast of Hughes on the opposite side of the Koyukuk River.
Map of Red Mountain Fire burning about 23 miles northeast of Hughes on the opposite side of the Koyukuk River.

About BLM Alaska Fire Service

The Bureau of Land Management Alaska Fire Service (AFS) located at Fort Wainwright, Alaska, provides wildland fire suppression services for over 244 million acres of Department of the Interior and Native Corporation Lands in Alaska. In addition, AFS has other statewide responsibilities that include: interpretation of fire management policy; oversight of the BLM Alaska Aviation program; fuels management projects; and operating and maintaining advanced communication and computer systems such as the Alaska Lightning Detection System. AFS also maintains a National Incident Support Cache with a $10 million inventory. The Alaska Fire Service provides wildland fire suppression services for America’s “Last Frontier” on an interagency basis with the State of Alaska Department of Natural Resources, USDA Forest Service, National Park Service, Bureau of Indian Affairs, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the U.S. Military in Alaska.

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