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Lake Chelan wildfire more than 1,550 acres; crews working to contain

lake chelan wildfire 07-05-13MANSON, Wash. — The wildfire that started July 4 north of the city of Mason and across from the Lake Chelan 25 Mile State Park has expanded to more than 1,550 acres and is contained 10 percent, the Washington Incident Management Team said.

The fire is burning above the Dutch Harbor area and the cause of the fire is under investigation.

A Level 1 evacuation notice for residents and visitors in Mason’s Emerson Acres and Green’s Landing communities and the Antilon Lake Campground area has been issued.

A Level 1 evacuation notice warns residents of the danger that exists in the area and that they should monitor local media outlets for further information. Residents who are sensitive to smoke or have special needs should make arrangements to evacuate, officials said.

Forest Service Road #8200 (Grade Creek Road) has been closed beyond Antilon Lake. On Friday, two 10-person crews provided structure protection for private residences within the fire perimeter and at the Mitchell Creek Campground. The Mitchell Creek Campground, accessible only by boat, has been closed.  All campers within the fire perimeter have been evacuated.

Fire crews were able to keep the fire west of the Mitchell Creek drainage, east of Grade Creek and south of the Grade Creek Road on Friday. The fire burned most actively along the northwest and west flanks of the fire. Steep terrain and the potential for rolling debris will increase fire spotting potential, officials said.

Fire crews are keeping an eye on shifting wind patterns which could impact the fire. The area is expected to have a temperature of 83 degrees and only 27 percent humidity.

Firefighters are working with public safety officers and the Chelan County Sheriff’s Department to keep the public from harm. Crews are also working to keep the fire within the current “box” west of Mitchell Creek, east of Grade Creek and south of the Grade Creek Road.

An Incident Command Center hs been set up at the Manson High School.

Officials are requesting that visitors to the area view firefighting efforts from the south shore of Lake Chelan and suggest that 25 Mile State Park is a good vantage point. Recreational boaters should be alert to stay clear of firefighting helicopters dipping water from the lake. Boating safety is being monitored and enforced by the Chelan County Sheriff’s Department.

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