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Some Western Alaska Fires Contained, Including Blaze Near Anvik

An aerial overview of a wildfire in southwestern Alaska
Photo: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (2017)

The Deadman’s Slough fire, which has been burning several miles away from Anvik for the last ten days, is now considered contained.

That’s according to a spokesperson from the Bureau of Land Management’s Alaska Fire Service, Beth Ipsen:

“We have two Type-2 emergency firefighter crews, one from Mountain Village and one from Grayling, that are doing mop-up. Basically, what they’ll do is go along in a grid system and check for hotspots, and a lot of times, what they have to do is feel for any kind of hotspot, feel in the ashes, and make sure that hotspot is completely out before we can consider it good, and then, we’ll pull all the firefighters off and put it into monitor status.”

Thanks to some rain in that area over the past few days, Ipsen says it is expected that the remaining personnel fighting the Deadman’s Slough fire will be able to relocate elsewhere, sometime today. According to the Alaska Interagency Coordination Center, at one point there were 96 personnel assigned to this fire.

Even though several of the 57 active wildfires state-wide are currently contained or being “mopped up,” Ipsen says the fire season in Alaska is not necessarily over:

“The northern third of the State hasn’t received that wetting rain; we’ve got some pretty dry conditions on the northeastern section of the State, we’re talking upper Yukon Zone right around the Yukon Flats. But it hasn’t seen the lightning that other parts, specifically the southwestern part of the State, has received. So that’s why we don’t have any fires in those areas, but their conditions are anywhere from very high to extreme.”

Another fire currently in the mop-up phase today is the Bell Creek fire near the community of Crooked Creek, which has grown to almost 3,000 acres in size.

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