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American Fire 100 Percent Contained, Mop-up Continues

Photo courtesy USFS

Photo courtesy USFS

Update: 2:12 p.m. - American Fire 100 Percent Contained, Mop-up Continues

Firefighters have completed containment of the American Fire, which began burning in the Tahoe National Forest on Aug. 10. The blaze consumed 27,440 acres.

Hot spots withing the fire's perimeter are still being detected and attacked during the mop-up operations. A total of 815 personnel are still assigned to the incident.

0830 American Fire Map

Although full containment of the fire has been reached, area residents and visitors should expect to see smoke from smoldering stumps and vegetation on the forest floor for some time. Firefighters working in the interior of the fire are paying close attention to hazards including burned trees above and burning tree stump holes and root systems on the ground.

With the Labor Day Holiday weekend upon us, Forest visitors are urged to comply with area and road closures. These closures are in place to protect visitors and fire fighters.

0830 American Fire Smoke

Photo courtesy USFS

The closed roads and areas are unsafe due to several factors including: fire-weakened, burned trees that pose a risk of falling; burning holes in the ground from tree roots and stumps; and heavy smoke making visibility extremely poor. These areas and roads will continue to be re-evaluated and will be re-opened as soon as possible.

Mosquito Ridge Road (FSR 96) will re-open at 8:00 a.m. today.

Hand Crews: 18 Engines: 39 Dozers: 3 Water Tenders: 23 Helicopters: 5

Closures: The following Forest Service Roads (FSR) on the American Fire area perimeter are still closed:

Deadwood Ridge Road (FSR 6149) from Foresthill Divide Road (FSR 0088) to the road’s end; Foresthill Divide Road (FSR 0088) from the intersection of Humbug Canyon Road (FSR 66) to Robinson Flat; and Flat Ravine Road (FSR 43) from Robinson Flat Campground to Mosquito Ridge Road (FSR 96).

Robinson Flat Campground and Duncan Peak Lookout also remain closed.

French Meadow Reservoir and access to the Oxbow Middle Fork American Rafting Launch remain open.


Basic Information

Incident Type Wildfire
Cause Under Investigation
Date of Origin Saturday August 10th, 2013 approx. 04:30 PM
Location 10 miles northeast of Foresthill.
Incident Commander Rocky Opliger

Current Situation

Total Personnel 815
Size 27,440 acres
Percent Contained 100%
Estimated Containment Date Thursday August 29th, 2013 approx. 12:00 AM
Fuels Involved

10 Timber (litter and understory).

Fire Behavior

No appreciable fire activity found through all Divisions have isolated interior pocketsof heat. In DIV R, deep interior surface fuels show active burning in inferior fuels.In DIV T, interior fuels showed smoldering with surface fire backing into Deep Canyon.

Significant Events

Continue active and aggressive mop-up where safe in DIV Z and DIV T. Two bridges on the Western States Trail suffered damage: 1 had moderate damage but is likely passable; the other had major structural damage. Suppression resources reduced large pockets of interior isloated fuels with controlled firing operations. The Incident continues to support Inital Attack requests within the TFR footprint and local forest area. The partial road closure of Mosquito Ridge Rd (Hwy 96)from the junction of the Ralston Rd. (Forest Rd 23), east to the junction of Forest Rd 96-052, west of French Meadows for public and firefighter safety will be lifted Friday. August 30th at 0800. Recreational opportunities remain open in French Meadows and adjacent surrounding recreational areas.Suppression Repair continued. 100% containment declared for 2000 hours tonight.


Planned Actions

Secure, mop-up and patrol in all Divisions. Update Suppression Repair data in GIS. Provide for Initial Attack responsibilities.

Growth Potential


Terrain Difficulty



Fire is burning in an old growth stand of timber with no recorded fire history.Significant changes in fuel types associated with the fire continue to burn in steep and hazardous terrain as well as receptive timber fuels that have not burned in decades.Consumption of heavy fuels continues to create heavy smoke in the surrounding area. The Forest, timber industry,local agencies, and private landowners continue to contribute to collaborate to implement strategy and tactics that will minimize impacts on high value timber resources, The Western States Trail, watershed, and local communities. Aerial ignition options are being reviewed for implementation. Critical resources remain ordered to maintain options to contain fire with the least resource damage that can be safely accomplished.

Current Weather

Wind Conditions 7 mph NE
Temperature 58 degrees
Humidity 40%

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