The weekend weather proved to be a double edged sword for fire danger on the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest as winds from the approaching cold front and subsequent precipitation first increased fire behavior on the Lonesome Fire, then provided enough relief to enable fire restrictions to be relaxed on the wild section of the Rogue Wild and Scenic River.
The Lonesome Fire, located within and adjacent to the Rogue-Umpqua Divide Wilderness on both the Rogue River-Siskiyou and Umpqua National Forests, continued to spread over the weekend, prompting the closure of a segment of Forest Road 6560 on the High Cascades Ranger District. This lightning sparked fire has been burning for over two weeks and is being managed to meet multiple resource objectives while minimizing firefighter exposure and suppression costs. That portion of Forest Road 6560 that has been closed begins at its junction with State Highway 230 to the junction with Forest Road 6560/400. The Lonesome Fire is currently estimated to be 1,200 acres and is exhibiting smoldering fire behavior in heavy dead fuels. Two twenty person handcrews and an engine are currently assigned to the fire.
Fire danger on the wild section of the Rogue Wild and Scenic River located within the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest has been downgraded from extreme to high effective Monday, Sept. 26. Current restrictions from Marial downstream to the mouth of Watson Creek are as follows:
1. Building, maintaining, attending or using a fire, campfire, or stove fire except:
a. In commercially produced pressurized liquid or gas stoves. Cooking areas are to be naturally free of vegetation. Each group must have a shovel and bucket.
b. Using charcoal briquettes only within a raised fire pan or similar device that will contain the fire and its residue, free of natural vegetation, below the high water mark from Marial downstream to the mouth of Watson Creek.
2. Smoking except within the following locations:
a. While aboard a watercraft while navigating, or at rest, on a waterway.
b. On sand and gravel bars between the river and the high water mark naturally free of flammable vegetation.
For additional information visit our website at www.fs.fed.us/r6/rrs or contact any Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest office.