The U.S. Forest Service reports that interagency crews have made significant progress combating the local Little Basin Fire. The 630-acre blaze is located in the Hells Canyon National Recreation Area near Dug Bar Road in Imnaha Canyon.
Personnel from both the Oregon Department of Forestry and USFS have battled the blaze to a virtual standstill. It was reported that 99 personnel on three crews, along with three helicopters and four engines are currently on scene.
The fire was reported on June 15. Fueled by grass, brush and timber, it grew from 100 to 630 acres over just a few days. The fire also resulted in the closure of Dug Bar Road, limiting access to salmon fishing.
Katy Gray, public affairs officer for the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest reported that the fire is 51 percent contained and is mainly burning and smoldering inside the fire lines and has not grown for more than 24 hours. “We’re making really good progress. The cooler weather and temperatures are helping, and over the next day or two we expect to have it 100 percent contained and wrapped up,” Gray said. She added that three recreational cabins originally threatened by the fire are now out of harm’s way, although an engine is standing by in case of a change of fire direction.
Paul Karvoski, Wallowa County Emergency Program Manager said the Dug Bar Road is slated to reopen at 6 a.m. on June 19.
Cause of the blaze is still unknown.