WALLOWA, OR – (Press release) The Elbow Creek Fire, 17 miles northwest of Wallowa, is estimated at 18,599 acres and is 20 percent contained. The fire’s increasing complexity and growth has moved it up on the priority scale with other fires in the region. The higher ranking should provide more opportunity to acquire additional resources within the next few days. Six additional crews arrived yesterday evening to support current suppression efforts.
Tuesday’s cooler conditions, combined with overnight showers is seen as an opportunity to get ahead of fire activity. Of concern is the Elbow Creek drainage, where the fire spotted from the east side of Elbow Creek over to the west side yesterday afternoon. Firefighters are hoping to gain direct access to the fire’s edge under today’s milder conditions with additional helicopter support. Crews are also going direct where they can in the Sickfoot and Deep Creek drainages, while planning for burnout operations where direct fire line construction in steep canyons is not an option. The north and east sides of the fire have not moved within the past few days and firefighters continue to mop up and patrol the area.
Lightning was spotted near the southwest side of the fire last night and the area is being monitored for possible new fires.
Level 2 and 3 evacuation notifications by the Wallowa County Sheriff’s Office remain unchanged. Additional information regarding evacuations is available on the Wallowa County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page (www.facebook.com/Wallowa-County-Sheriffs-Office-147212815486187).
Several fires continue to burn throughout Oregon and fire danger remains extreme. Fire officials continue to ask the public for assistance in preventing human-caused fires by following all fire regulations and restrictions. Log on to oregon.gov/odf for up-to-date fire restrictions in your area.