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Foss Lake Wildfire update May 26, 10:00 am 2016

Thursday, May 26, 2016, 10:00 a.m.

from MNICS Team C, Brian Pisarek, Incident Commander

Web address:

Phone: 218-365-2216
Location: US Forest Service, 1393 Hwy 169, Ely, Open 8 am–6 pm

Size: 936 acres
Containment: 95 percent
Resources: 6 crews, 2 CCMI camp crews, 1 light helicopter, 1 engine, 1 water tender, 212 total personnel


Fire Start Date: May 19, 2016

Current Situation: Firefighters removed ten miles of hose off the fireline. Conservation Corps Minnesota Iowa (CCMI) crew members rolled and prepared it for transport to the Minnesota Interagency Fire Center fire cache in Grand Rapids where it will be washed, dried, and stored for the next time it’s needed. CCMI crew members also hauled 20 aluminum canoes across the over-mile-long portage from Crab to Burntside.

The light helicopter assisted crews by transporting cargo such as pumps, hose, trash, gas cans off the fireline. As of Wednesday morning, the helicopters had transported nearly 20,000 pounds of cargo, dropped over 815,000 gallons of water and 62,500 gallons of retardant, and clocked 130 hours of flight time.

Today firefighters will continue to extinguish isolated smoldering stumps and duff (referred to as mopping up) as they patrol the fire perimeter. They will use chainsaws to cut the occasional snag—a standing, damaged tree that is likely to fall along the fireline or portage, posing a safety hazard to firefighters and the public. More gear, equipment, and trash will be backhauled.
Campsites and areas affected by fire-suppression activity will be rehabilitated (for example, repairing areas along a portage eroded from water drops or digging a new latrine, if needed, at campsites used by crews). Two crews (about 40 people) and many personnel are demobilizing today as the Type 2 MNICS Team C prepares to transfer command of the fire back to a local Type 3 organization on Friday afternoon.

Weather: Temperatures will be in the mid-70s and clouds will keep the relative humidity above 40 percent. Southeast winds will be variable (5–8 mph), possibly switching to the west and gusting to 12 mph in the afternoon. The chance of receiving a wetting rain is low: 20 percent before noon.

Future Fire Behavior: Current weather conditions are favorable to minimal fire behavior. The fire is secure due to the 100-foot mopped-up buffer between the fire’s perimeter and interior. During a flight on Tuesday, an infrared thermal imager detected three areas of heat in the fire’s interior. Another flight scheduled for this morning will reveal what heat remains within the perimeter. Depending on future weather, any small pocket of existing heat could create small amounts of smoke that would be visible to people near the fire. The presence of smoke does not mean that the fire has escaped the containment line or that the fire is actively burning. The continued presence of firefighters does not indicate active fire behavior. They remain in the fire area for patrols, fire-line rehabilitation, and initial-attack response to new fire starts.

Closures: BWCAW entry point #4 (Crab Lake entry point) will reopen on Friday morning.The current closure order remains in effect until then.

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As of May 25, 2016 Foss Lake Fire 95% Contained BWCAW entry point #4 (Crab Lake entry point) will reopen on Friday morning.

25 May 2016, 8:15 p.m.

Full Link on incident Here

The fire is now 95 percent contained.

One of today's objectives was to backhaul excess equipment, hose, and trash off the fireline. Firefighters hauled 10 miles of hose off the line to a drop point at the end of Wolf Lake Road. From there, Conservation Corps Minnesota and Iowa crew members loaded the hose into trucks and brought it back to the incident command post in Ely. They untangled the hoses, spread them out in straight lines, and hooked them up to a rolling machine, which turned them into compact round bundles that were stacked on pallets. The pallets will be returned to the fire cache at the Minnesota Interagency Fire Center in Grand Rapids. There it will be washed and dried prior to being stored, ready to send to the next incident when ordered.

BWCAW entry point #4 (Crab Lake entry point) will reopen on Friday morning.

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Foss Lake Fire Update Wildfire near Ely

Foss Lake Wildfire Update May 24, 2016

Update on the Wildfire that began as a prescribed burn last Thursday.

Some Boundary Waters Closures including the Crab Lake Entry Point.

Current Containment is 55%.  If you have a permit for this area in the next two weeks through Piragis Northwoods Company Outfitters, please call us for more details and to adjust your trip plans.

See below for details:

Incident: Foss Lake Fire Wildfire
Released: 11 min. ago
Foss Lake Fire Update
Tuesday, May 24, 2016, 9:00 a.m.MNICS Team C, Brian Pisarek, Incident Commander

Fire Information

Web address:


Phone: 218-365-2216 (new number) Location: US Forest Service, 1393 Hwy 169, Ely, open 8 am–6 pm

Size: 1015 acres Containment: 55 percent Fire Start Date: May 19, 2016

Resources: 6 crews, 2 CCMI camp crews, 2 helicopters, 4 engines, 1 water tender, 217 total personnel
Starting today, fire updates will be released once a day in the morning.



Current Situation: Another day of strong winds tested the fireline yesterday, but the lines held and the fire did not grow. The progress firefighters have made allowed fire managers to consider over half of the fire contained. The hottest area of the fire is on the northwest side between Crab and Clark Lakes and south of Clark Lake. Helicopters were not needed yesterday for water drops. They provided support by hauling gear and supplies to and from the fire area. They will be available today for logistical support and water drops if needed. Ground crews will continue working to extend the containment line today by laying hose on already cut line and mopping up hot spots. Three crews continue to camp in the wilderness: two on Crab Lake and one on Clark Lake. The other crews hike to and from the fire every day. Firefighters have installed five to six miles of fire hose and around the perimeter.
The Lake Vermilion Fire Brigade, Morse/Fall Lake Fire Department, and St. Louis County Sheriff’s Rescue Squad were demobilized from the incident yesterday. MNICS Team C appreciates the local expertise, structure protection, and equipment they provided to the firefighting efforts.

Weather and Fire Behavior: A quarter-inch of rain fell on the fire area last night, which is not enough to extinguish fire but is enough to significantly suppress and retard fire spread and new starts. The moisture will increase the effectiveness of firefighters’ suppression and mop-up efforts on the fireline today. Winds will be light and variable today, reaching 5–9 mph this afternoon. The temperature will be in the high 70s, and the relative humidity will hover around 35 percent. Fire behavior will likely be minimal today.

Closures: Crab Lake entry point #4 is the only BWCAW entry point that is closed. The following BWCAW portages and lakes/rivers, including campsites, are closed:
· portage from Burntside Lake to Crab Lake (entry point #4)
· portage from Cummings Lake to Korb Lake; portage from Cummings Lake to Korb River
· lakes and associated portages: Crab, Boulder, Phantom, Battle, Sprite, Meat, Clark, Glimmer, Hassle, Saca, Little Crab, Korb, Maxine, Barefoot, Little Jig, Silaca, Coxey Pond, Lunetta, Schlamn, Soroll, Glenmore, Western, Blick, Chad, Dugout, and Pine.

· Pine Creek east of Trout Lake

· portage from Trout Lake to Pine Lake
Closure signs are posted at normal access points to delineate the closure area. The closure order and map are located at

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Contact Info

105 N Central Avenue
Ely, Minnesota 55731

Info: (800) 223-6565
Fax: (218) 365-6220
Local: (218) 365-6745


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