Progress was good today on the fire and the remaining burnout went well. The fire was reported at 56,200 acres as of 5:00 pm, mostly due to the burnout operation. Mop up along the highway and the western flank is continuing to ensure no heat remains.
People will continue to see smoke as the islands of fuel away from the highway continue to be consumed and there may be smoke on the Sterling Highway until the inversion lifts mid morning.
With less fuel out front of the fire on at least 3 flanks, the public can expect less smoke in the coming days. However, since not all the perimeter is planned for containment, the fire will continue to burn east into the Wildlife Refuge creating a healthier and more diverse forest.
Both lanes of the Sterling Highway remain open with a short zone (MP 67 to 75) slowed to 35 mph for the safety of drivers and firefighters. Please use headlights.
The Borough call center will be closed Saturday at 5:00 pm. But until then, people will be there to answer any questions about the fire, from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm .