Peninsula fires largely in monitor status

Jun 11, 2019

 

Smoke from the Swan Lake fire, burning east of Sterling, is blowing as far as the Anchorage Hillside.
Credit Patrick Quiner/Alaska Division of Forestry

Fire crews were able to get a good handle on multiple fires burning around the Kenai Peninsula over the weekend. By late Friday, the 176 acre Tustumena Lake fire was called fully contained.

Division of Forestry spokesperson Andy Alexandrou says some of the personnel there were shifted to the Coal Creek fire in the Caribou Hills.

“That’s about mile 103 of the Sterling highway about two miles east of the highway. That’s 13.8 acres. Another lightning-caused fire. It started on the seventh of the month...We have the Pioneer Peak Hotshot crew on that fire plus the helittack crew from Soldotna forestry.”

Strong winds are anticipated to push the Swan Lake fire further east of Sterling tomorrow. It remains fully inside a limited management area, meaning it will be closely monitored but unless it gets close to any property, it will be allowed to burn. It’s now estimated at more than 1,700 acres.

“It’s not endangering any kind of improvements anywhere in the general vicinity. Again, there might be a smoke problem, but there’s no real danger of it burning any kind of structure or improvements at this time," Alexandrou said.  

He says officials with U.S. Fish and Wildlife and the state are drafting contingency plans to put personnel on that fire should it become necessary.