(FAIRBANKS, Alaska) – A Red Flag Warning was issued Sunday for extreme fire weather due to persistent hot and dry conditions in the area. Erratic winds are likely in the afternoon, generated by predicted thunderstorm activity over the region. Collapsing thunderheads could provide strong downdrafts in the vicinity of the Isom Creek Fire (#187), creating favorable conditions for rapid fire growth. Aircraft and helicopters continue to assist firefighters on the ground as they work on the most active part of the fire on eastern perimeter. Firefighters will closely monitor weather conditions throughout the day and be ready for sudden changes in fire behavior and spread.
The fire size was last estimated at 12,024 acres, an increase of 968 acres since June 12. With the fire growth, containment slightly lowered to an estimated 26%. The eastern fire front is moving into brushy vegetation in the Waldron Creek area, which previously burned in 2004. Crews on the southern and western edges of the fire continue to hold and reinforce the fire lines around Native allotments, near the Dalton Highway, and in the vicinity of Hovercraft Road. Continued work is needed in these areas to prevent fire spread during the extreme fire weather forecast for today.
The Dalton Highway remains open to travel, with traffic control as needed for smoke conditions or in support of firefighting efforts. Drivers need to use extreme caution between mileposts 34-62 by driving slowly with headlights on. Be prepared for low visibility, firefighting personnel and equipment along the roadway. Do not stop on the highway. Please use turnouts outside of mileposts 34-62. The Yukon River Camp north of the Yukon River Bridge at milepost 56 is open for food, fuel and lodging. The fire reached the Trans-Alaska Pipeline, however, it remains undamaged as it was designed to withstand wildfires.
A Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) is in place over the fire and some of the surrounding area to provide a safe operating environment for firefighting aircraft. Go to https://tfr.faa.gov for more information on the TFR.
Detailed information on Isom River Fire can be found here.