McKinley Fire Overview Website: Archive of Maps, Videos Updates, Community Meetings and Photo Gallery

View the McKinley Fire ArcGIS Story Map and Archive by clicking here.

While suppression repair and mop up continues on the McKinley Fire under the command of IC3 Zane Brown and IC3 trainee Bryan Quimby, we wanted to share with you two powerful tools that should help inform each and every viewer about the need and urgency to Firewise private properties in the wildland urban interfaces both in Alaska and across the world. 

With the help of GIS specialist Aaron Seifert and his team who worked for Norm McDonald’s Alaska Interagency Incident Management Type 2 Team, and with the photos and drone footage provided by dozens of firefighters, we were able to create a thorough NIFC ArcGIS web page and Story Map for the McKinley Fire. If you happen to have photos or videos from the fire that you feel should be shared or a part of the long term archive, please call the McKinley Fire Information phone at 907-313-9826.

If you haven’t already, we encourage you to watch this powerful 11 minute video that captures the dynamic and terrifying nature of the McKinley Fire as the strong, dry and hot winds on August 18th whipped the fire into one of the most destructive in Alaska’s long and storied fire history. Public Information Officer Renette Saba directed and edited this video while assigned with Norm McDonald’s Alaska Interagency Incident Management Type 2 Team. It is also available on Facebook. The entire second half of this video is devoted to promoting the basics of the Firewise program. The call for action is urgent and  necessary.

McKinley Fire Update

Repair work on suppression firelines is nearly complete. Firefighters will continue to patrol and monitor the area for hot spots, ash pits and other hazards involving the fire weakened trees and debris. 

Recent amounts of rainfall have been not enough to penetrate fully into the deeper duff layer, which means that areas that have been burning deeply remain protected from the rain. All residents are encouraged to remain extremely vigilant for ash pits when walking in the fire area. 

Many of the fire personnel remaining on the incident responded to the 2015 Sockeye Fire. Because these crews live and work in the area, they have recent experience that will help guide their work. One of the main “watch out” situations is for alignments of downed fuels or stacked berms that could create what firefighters call “holdovers”. In a burn area this large and with the burn so deep, to a certain degree a few “holdovers” of hidden heat in berms or ash pits are inevitable. The more work that is completed now, the fewer issues firefighters will have to address next spring.

All power is restored to the area and any residents experiencing issues should call the Matanuska Electric Association. Residences from milepost 81.5 to 92 of the Parks Highway are still in evacuation “Level 1-Ready.”  The Parks Highway speed limit remains 45 mph through the fire vicinity.

Extreme caution and a high level of awareness is urged for residents within the fire perimeter and woodcutters along the Parks Highway.  Deep pockets of burning organic material called ashpits, along with snags pose significant dangers to anyone inside the burn area.  

Disaster Assistance: There are several agencies with information on disaster assistance; please visit Alaska Wildland Fire Information: for detailed contact information. 

The Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) over the McKinley Fire has been lifted.

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McKinley Fire, Deshka Fire, Alaska Wildfires, Wildfires 2019, Willow Alaska, DOF Wildfires, BLM Alaska, AK Fire Info, Mat-Su Wildfire

Categories: AK Fire Info

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