Update: Okanogan and Chelan Fire Complexes and Tunk Block and North Star Fires

North Star Fire Map
North Star Fire Map

Update: Okanogan and Chelan Fire Complexes and

Tunk Block and North Star Fires

Sept. 9, 2015, 9 a.m.  Fire Information: 877-568-0458or877-574-5148, 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Okanogan Complex Update:

Size: 132,634 acres

 Estimated Cost to Date: $33.3 million

Containment: 85 percent

Injuries: 7

Total Personnel: 982

Residences Damaged or Destroyed:123

Committed Resources: 19 crews, 41 engines, 5 helicopters, 7 dozers, 19 water tenders, 2 skidgines, 13 masticators

 On the west side of the fire along Forest Road (FR) 42 where the perimeter is uncontained, firefighters are waiting for favorable weather and fuel conditions to conduct defensive firing operations from an indirect dozer line. Tree-falling crews continue to remove fire-weakened hazard trees along FR42.On the northwest and north sides, crews are patrolling the fire perimeter for smoke—usually coming from smoldering stump holes—and mopping up as needed. Along the eastern and southern perimeters, firefighters continue to patrol, mop up, and assist the suppression-repair group. The weather today will be warmer and drier than it has been in the past several days. As unburned pockets of fuel burn in the fire’s interior, smoke might be visible from roads and residences. However, the fire is not threatening to escape the fireline, which is secure.

The acreage and cost reductions in the table above are due to the Twisp River and Nine Mile Fires no longer being reported under the Okanogan Complex. The management of those fires has been returned to the local units. California Interagency Incident Management Team5will transfer command of the Okanogan Complex to Washington Interagency Incident Management Team 5 today, September 9, at 6 p.m.At the same time, they will assume command of the Tunk Block and North Star Fires.

Chelan Complex Update:

Chelan Complex Fire Update:

Size: 88,684 acres

Estimated Cost to Date: $18.9 million

Containment: 75 percent

Injuries: 9

Total Personnel: 515

Residences Damaged or Destroyed: 23

Committed Resources: 8 crews, 30 engines, 5 dozers, 14 water tenders



Incident Commander Bob Allbee with Washington Interagency Incident Management Team 3 took over management of the Chelan Complex at 6 p.m. yesterday. The team is located at the Alta Lake Camp out of Pateros. Mop up along and inside the fire perimeter will continue today. The fire will continue to be monitored in the Saint Luise Creek area. Suppression repair of dozer lines and handlines will continue north and south from the Black Canyon and McFarland Creek Roads.


  • The Okanogan Wenatchee NationalForest issued an area closure, effective Sept. 4, 2015, for federal lands in the fire area: http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/article/4534/29367/or http://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/okawen/alerts-notices
  • Okanogan County Emergency Operations Center provides information on evacuations and road closures: 509-422-7348, Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Okanogan.County.Emergency.Management


North Star and Tunk Block Fires Update:

Pacific Northwest Team 3 will Transition with California Team 5, who will take command of the North Star and Tunk Block Fires at 6: 00 pm today. The Incident command post location at the Omak Stampede Grounds and the phone number for information remain unchanged.

Yesterday’s Activities: Firefighters continued working to ensure that their containment lines were secure as the weather produced 0.02-0.06 inches of rain in the early morning on both the Tunk Block as well as the North Star Fire. The rain lasted until about noon.

Most heat on the Tunk Fire was in the eastern portion and that was reduced and contained by aviation. On the North Star Fire, machine work, as well as hand crews, mopped up along the eastern edge. The southern end was patrolled and is looking good. Firefighters are going direct in the western portion. A burnout operation of about 50 acres was successful in helping strengthen containment lines on the southeast corner.

A minor spot fire was controlled in the Tunk Block Fire yesterday.

Today’s Operations: Burnout operations to secure firelines are a priority for today as fine fuels dry enough to meet the intended objectives. As temperatures rise and humidity levels drop, more active fire behavior is anticipated on the open flanks and smokes may be visible within the fire perimeter.  Above 3,000 feet fine fuels, like grasses, will be slower to dry and the fire is expected to be less active at those higher elevations. Backing fire will be seen under forest canopy in the mid-slope areas.

There are now containment lines in place on the southwest portion of the North Star Fire. On the northwest portion crews will continue mopping-up and holding the line.

Last night’s infrared flight detected of heat on the eastern perimeter of the Tunk Block fire and firefighters will continue with containment efforts along that flank.

Weather: The forecasted weather for today is 53-58 in ridges and 65-70 in the valleys. Minimum RH 25-35 percent. Up slope/Up valley winds 2-5MPH.High pressure is forecast to weaken Saturday, bringing some increased winds to the region.

Evacuations/Closure Information:Evacuation and closure information is dynamic and changes more frequently than this report is updated. For the most current evacuation information, please contact your closest Emergency Operations Center (EOC): Colville Tribal Emergency Services 509-634-2105, Okanogan County EOC 509-422-7206, Ferry County EOC 509-775-3132. Highway closure information is available online:http://www.wsdot.com/traffic/.

National Forest Lands east of Tonasket and south of Highway 20 on the Tonasket Ranger District are closed. Colville Indian Reservation forest and recreational areas are closed within the fires.

Okanogan Complex: