Windy Fire Update: 9-29-21
RESOURCES: 2,393 personnel, 67 hand crews, 133 engines, 18 helicopters, 34 dozers, 9 water tenders
Structures Threatened: 2,000 Residences, 100 Commercial Buildings, Injuries: 3
PUBLIC MEETING: Tonight at 7 P.M., there will be virtual public meeting for the Windy Fire. The meeting will be livestreamed on the Sequoia National Forest Facebook page and on Zoom (meeting ID: 160 212 1141; passcode: J227!q; call-in phone number: 669-254-5252). If you have questions that you would like answered at the meeting, please send them to [email protected].
TULARE COUNTY RESIDENT INFORMATION: Tulare County is assessing the damage to homes and property in the Sugarloaf and Pine Flat Areas. Community members impacted by the Windy Fire can call the Tulare County Information Hotline at (559) 802-9790. Affected property owners should complete the September Lighting Fire Information Form online at: https://bit.ly/3ETdZjI. People who have cabins in Summer Home Tracts on the Forest will be contacted by the Sequoia National Forest.
CURRENT SITUATION: The Windy Fire is 87,901, acres with 25% containment and is a full suppression fire. The fire is burning on the Tule River Indian Reservation and the Sequoia National Forest, including the Giant Sequoia National Monument. The fire perimeter increased 583 acres in the last 24 hours.
Yesterday, gusty westerly winds tested containment lines, especially on the east side from Ponderosa south to Johnsondale. Overnight, no spot fires (spot fires can be ignited when winds carry hot embers across a fire line) were observed outside of the fire’s perimeter.
This morning, Fire Managers are reporting 25 percent containment (lines are secure and fire will not spread further) of the fire’s perimeter. The new containment is on the northern perimeter from the Two and Quarter Road (On the Tule River Indian Reservation) east to Ponderosa and along a portion of the Lloyd Meadow Road (FS Road 22S28) north of Johnsondale.
Today, the priority continues to be protecting structures on the southwest perimeter near California Hot Springs, Sugarloaf and Pine Flat areas. Fire engines continue to engage in structure defense and extinguishing hotspots (burning tree stumps, downed logs, etc.) along the dozer and hand lines that extend into California Hot Springs. Crews are improving indirect containment lines from Mt Road 50 (at the switchbacks) west to Lone Pine Mountain.
On the northwest side, favorable winds yesterday allowed crews to conduct a tactical firing operation southward toward Wheatons. Today, firefighters will continue to hold and strengthen containment lines from Wheatons south to Corral Hill.
On the north side, crews continue tactical patrols (extinguishing any burning vegetation, stumps, etc.) along the Coy Flat Road (FS Road 21S94) northeast to Coy Flat. Their efforts have been successful in containing the fire and keeping it south of Camp Nelson.
On the northeast side near Ponderosa, crews continue holding and improving containment lines east to Lloyd Meadow Road (FS Road 22S28) and south to Johnsondale.
On the east and southeast side, the fire remains active from Flynn Canyon south to Tobias Peak. Crews continue to work along the Sugarloaf Road (23S1) towards the Spear Creek Summer Home Tract improving fire lines and providing structure defense.
The fire is backing downslope east towards the Kern River, and crews will be looking to construct hand line from the Kern River southwest along the Tobias Creek Trail. Crews are also working to protect the Baker Point Lookout wrapping it with a protective shield to minimize damage from the advancing flames.
On the south side, the fire has backed into the 2016 Cedar Fire which has moderated activity. There are small spot fires, caused by the winds a few days ago, burning in pockets of dead and down trees. Due to safety concerns such as numerous standing dead trees, crews are establishing indirect lines, away from the fire’s edge, around the spot fires.
WEATHER AND FIRE BEHAVIOR: Warmer and drier conditions are forecast for the rest of the week with light winds across ridges and mountaintops.
EVACUATIONS ORDERS: The following information is from the Tulare County Sherriff’s Office.
Evacuation orders and warnings can change suddenly, please refer to https://tularecounty.ca.gov/emergencies/ for the Windy Fire Evacuation Warning Area Map. For more information, please call 2-1-1.
- The communities of Sugarloaf, Sugarloaf Mountain Park, Sugarloaf Saw Mill, White River, Idlewild, Posey, Panorama Heights, Poso, Balance Rock, Spear Creek, from the existing Hot Springs Evacuation Order west to King George Peak, south to County M56, including Oak Flat, Twin Peak, to Vincent Ranch at the Tulare-Kern Counties Border, east to Portuguese Peak, and back north to Dunlap Meadow.
- California Hot Springs and Pine Flat areas. The evacuation order includes M-504 at Tyler Creek, Southeast to Pine Flat, West to M-56 and Fire Control Road, North up Tyler Creek Road. This includes structures, side roads, and attached roads.
- Camp Nelson and surrounding communities.
- Johnsondale and Camp Whitsett, including M107 at Dome Rock, east to Lloyd Meadow Road (FS Road 22S82), south to M99 at Sherman Pass Road, west to M107 and M50.
- Ponderosa and Quaking Aspen. The warning area includes M107 at Dome Rock, north to Highway 190/M90 at North Road (FS Road 21S50), east to Route 21S05, at Needles Trail, south to Lloyd Meadow at Lower Peppermint Road (FS Road 22S82).
- The areas of McNally’s. From Sherman Pass Road to Corral Creek.
EVACUATION WARNING: Both sides of the Kern River from the Gold Ledge Campground south to Riverkern, Tulare County, at the Tulare/Kern border. This warning will include all private properties, businesses, residences, structures, campsites, campgrounds, Forest Service roads, access roads, attached roads, and trails.
ROAD CLOSURES AND RESTRICTIONS:
- At Jack Ranch Road and Old Stage Road
- Highway 190 and Rio Vista
- MT99 at Gold Ledge Campground
- MT56 at Fountain Springs