ashland.news
July 14, 2024

Firefighters get line all the way around Upper Applegate Fire

The Upper Applegate Fire on Sunday morning. ODF photo
June 24, 2024

Fire about 19 miles west of Ashland reaches 756 acres

Ashland.news staff report

Lines on the Upper Applegate Fire south of Ruch, reached 100% complete around the fire perimeter, the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) Southwest Oregon District announced in its Sunday evening update about the fire burning about 19 miles west of Ashland.

About 35% of the line is direct as of Sunday evening. Firefighters spent the day holding the fire in its current footprint through hot and windy conditions. 

GPS mapping put the fire’s size at 756 acres. An infrared flight was planned for Sunday night to solidify the measurement.

An ODF map shows the area of the Upper Applegate Fire south of Ruch, just east of the Applegate River.

Firefighters were able to meet their goal Sunday of securing water access to the southern portion of the fire to allow water to flow downhill and aid in efforts overnight Sunday.

They also were able to bolster contingency lines. Hot, windy weather continued Sunday, which prompted a few small spot fires near the top of a ridge. Firefighters were able to quickly knock them down and begin mopping up. Hazards continue to be the heat and wind, falling trees and rocks, and steep terrain.

As of Sunday evening, more 160 personnel were assigned to the incident, including five 20-person crews, three engines, four bulldozers, three water tenders and numerous aircraft. Goals for the overnight shift include strengthening existing lines and continuing to mop up hotspots and spot fires that were caught during the day.

An air tanker drops retardant on the Upper Applegate Fire. ODF photo

Level 2  (“Be Set”) evacuation notices remain in effect by the Jackson County Sheriff‘s Office and Jackson County Emergency Management for Zones JAC-434 and JAC-436. More information about zones and locations is available here: protect.genasys.com.

The fire is affecting private, BLM and U.S. Forest Service (USFS) land on the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest. It was first reported in the late afternoon of Thursday, June 20. The cause of this fire is currently under investigation.

The fire danger level on the ODF Southwest Oregon District is moderate (blue) and regulations are in place. Fire season information is also available on the ODF Southwest Oregon website: swofire.com.

Source: Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) Southwest Oregon District Facebook page. Email Ashland.news at news@ashland.news.

Related stories:

‘Significant danger’: Level 2 evacuations ordered for Upper Applegate Fire (June 22, 2024)

Applegate fire grew to 100 acres Thursday, evacuation warning expanded (June 20, 2024)

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Bert Etling

Bert Etling is the executive editor of Ashland.news. Email him at betling@ashland.news.

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