One of the Del Rosa Hot Shot crew out of San Bernardino enlarges the backfires being set to reduce the fuel load.
Crews Working to Contain Bear Creek Edge, State of Emergency Declared
Originally published 9:49 a.m., July 17, 2017
Updated 10:57 a.m., July 17, 2017
With humidity up and temperatures down, overnight Sunday was fairly quiet for the Whittier Fire, according to incident officials at this morning’s briefing held at the command post at Dos Pueblos High School. With 18,311 acres burned and containment back up to 49 percent, the fire continues to slowly creep downslope along the western, southern, and eastern edges, while crews continue mop-up and monitor the fire’s northern boundary, much of which is pinched between Highway 154 and Lake Cachuma. Highway 154 was reopened late Sunday afternoon and evacuated campers have been allowed back into Lake Cachuma Recreation Area to retrieve any valuables left behind as the fire sparked to life and grew rapidly on July 8.
Prominent among today’s goals is to button-up what firefighting crews are calling Division B, essentially the Whittier’s easternmost edge, now burning rugged terrain in the Bear Creek drainage. “It’s very slow going,” said Pat Russell, part of a federal team running daily operations. “It’s very steep, with 10-foot-tall brush — brush that looks like trees. But we’re moving in on the last 3,000 feet of uncontrolled edge.” The fire has…
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