An aerial view of Devore Creek on Wednesday afternoon. Water drops are being used strategically, where they can be most effective. The cleft in the mountain on left is a place where trees are sparser and water can penetrate the canopy to reach burning materials on the ground.

STEHEKIN – The lightning-caused Devore Creek Fire has burned across 425 acres of land about three air miles southwest of town.

Hot weather and gusty winds today, Aug. 8, are expected to make the fire grow, said the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest.

The fire is burning in steep, timbered terrain next to Lake Chelan.

Stehekin has been placed on Level 1 (be aware) evacuation status.

So far, the fire fight has cost $898,000. The fire was reported July 26 from lighting storms that moved through the area July 23-24.

Personnel on the fire total 59, including one hand crew, three helicopters and 31 overhead personnel.

The fire grew Wednesday. A heavy lift helicopter was used to make water drops Wednesday afternoon as a delaying action to cool portions of the fire’s leading edges and prevent more spot fires.

More hot temperatures, along with gusty winds, are predicted today. Additional water drops are planned today if conditions allow.

Smoke will be visible from many points around the region again today and air quality may be impacted in the Twisp area, said the Forest Service. The forecast calls for rain in the area this weekend.

Fire managers, working with federal, state and local agencies, have developed a plan of actions to take if the fire continues to move down Devore Creek toward the Stehekin Valley. Those plans include a community protection fire line that follows a portion of the Stehekin River Trail.

Other actions, such as the use of air resources, may be used if there is a good chance those actions will succeed, and the risk to fire personnel is acceptable.

Closures include Devore Creek Trail No. 1244, Company Creek Trail No. 1243 and Ten Mile Creek Trail No. 1241. Company Creek Trail is closed at the trailhead in Lake Chelan National Recreation Area. The Stehekin River Trail in Lake Chelan National Recreation Area is closed temporarily between Weaver Point and the Stehekin airstrip.

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