Story Summary

Capitol Forest Wildfire

A wildfire in Capitol Forest was reported around 12:30 a.m. Sunday, May 5, the West Thurston County Fire Authority reported. About 8 miles northwest of Littlerock, the fire initially had burned 60 acres on state trust lands that contain logging slash and 20-year old trees, the state Department of Natural Resources said.

Story Timeline
Previous Next
This story has 3 updates

OLYMPIA — “We’re still concerned about the wind and the weather for the next few days. It’s the beginning of another tough fire season. Wind driven, dead grass, dead fuels.  I urge everybody to be very careful, extra careful because fire season is here and it looks like it’s going to be a tough one,” DNR Incident Commander Charley Burns said.

Dof Mountain FireIt is a dire prediction from the wildfire experts at the Washington Department of Natural Resources, that the wildfire season seems to be starting early and if the weather we’re having is any indication, it could be a hot one.

“The dead fuels, the fuels that didn’t burn last year.  The dead grass is ready to burn and at this time of year it doesn’t take much,” Burns went on to say.

Of the ten fires that started over the weekend two, with the potential to cause a lot of damage, continue to burn.

“The dog Mountain Fire in Lewis County has burned about a hundred acres of forest land and is about 50 percent contained..

Fortunately no homes have burned, and, at least so far, there are no evacuations.

Then there’s the C-Line fire in Capitol State Forest northwest of Olympia.

It was first reported Sunday.

It’s burned some 60 acres and has closed some popular campgrounds and trails in the forest.

“We started hearing crackles and we could hear the fire and it seemed like it was about to come our way a little bit so we decided to get out of there,” witness Michael Landrum said.

“You just realize how fast one small cigarette, one small this or that how fast it can ignite and cause major problems out here,” witness Darin Deskins said.

“Everybody; be careful with fire especially a camp fire,” Burns said.

This is what fire fighters hope to avoid.

Fire fighters hope to avoid last year’s Taylor Bridge fire near Cle Elum.

23-thousand acres charred, 61 homes destroyed, damage estimates topped 11 million dollars.

“You need to be smart.  If you’re going to have a fire make it down in the camp ground where it’s right next to the water or don’t be dumb about it.  Everyone else pays a price for people being stupid,” neighbor Tiffany Hull said.

Outdoor burning is the leading cause of wildfire ignition. One of the best ways to protect access to your local recreation area is to manage your campfires responsibly. Be sure to follow these tips next time you enjoy an evening around the fire:

» Never leave a campfire unattended at any time.

» Drown fire thoroughly with water.

» Stir until cold.

» Drown fire again and stir.

» Never leave a campfire until it is completely out and cool to the touch.

It looks like it’s shaping up to be a beautiful summer! Be safe out there and remember, you are our eyes and ears in the forest. That makes you our best chance in catching wildfires and other issues early on. To report a fire, call 9-1-1. To report other illegal activities call 1-855-883-8368 or email forestwatch@dnr.wa.gov .

capitolfire

The Capitol Forest fire was first reported Sunday morning. (Photo: Sarah McCleary)

OLYMPIA — A fire in Capitol State Forest that started near Littlerock, Wash., Sunday has grown from 40 to 60 acres.

According to officials with Washington state’s Department of Natural Resources, the C-Line Wildfire was reported in the early morning of May 5 approximately 8 miles northwest of Littlerock. The fire is burning on state trust lands that contain logging slash and 20-year-old trees. Smoke is visible from Olympia, officials said, and firefighters are still battling flames.

Fire crews also fought a 10-acre fire in Sunday in Lewis County near Riffe Lake. The fire posed a significant logistical challenge, authorities said, because of the steepness in terrain.

The cause of both fires is under investigation.

LITTLEROCK, Wash. — Fire crews from West Thurston County on Sunday were fighting a 60-acre wildfire in the Capitol Forest, southwest of Olympia.

capitolfire

The Capitol Forest fire was first reported Sunday morning. (Photo: Sarah McCleary)

The wildfire was reported around 12:30 a.m. Sunday, the West Thurston County Fire Authority reported.

About 8 miles northwest of Littlerock, the fire is spread out in spots over a 60-acre footprint on state trust lands that contain logging slash and 20-year old trees, the state Department of Natural Resources said.

Smoke is visible from Olympia.

There are about 40 people working to suppress this fire, the DNR said. Engines and one helicopter are on the scene. The cause of this fire is under investigation, and the West Thurston County Fire Authority said earlier that the origin of the fire had been determined to be suspicious.

Winds are pushing from the east approximately 5 to 10 miles per hour.

There are no homes or structures threatened and there have been no injuries to fire crews.

Advertisement