Steady winds during the Labor Day weekend helped spread the Point Fire in Yellowstone National Park to 1,100 acres, while fires elsewhere in the park remained comparatively small.
The Point Fire, located on the eastern side of Yellowstone Lake, was burning in downed and dead logs with single and group tree torching behavior increasing in the afternoons, park officials said. As a precautionary measure, the Thorofare Trail has been closed from the Nine Mile Trailhead to one mile south of the fire area. Smoke will likely be visible around the eastern edge of the lake and on portions of the East Entrance road.
Five lightning caused wildland fires, managed as the Heart Complex, continue to burn in the park's backcountry.
The Gibbon Fire, burning three miles southeast of Madison Junction, has seen little new fire activity and remains estimated at 16-18 acres.
Three other fires, the Ouzel, Huckleberry, and Pitchstone are all one acre or less in size. They are being managed to allow natural processes to occur to enhance the area’s natural resources, to protect people and property, and to effectively use available firefighting resources.
The Sour Fire, which was burning east of Canyon Village, and the Heart Fire, which was burning north of Heart Lake, were declared out at a tenth of an acre, September 4 and 6, respectively.
Other than limited temporary closures of some backcountry campsites and hiking trails, all park entrances, roads and services are open. None of these fires poses a threat to park visitors.
When actively burning, smoke from any of these fires may be visible from park roadways. Updated information is available 24-hours a day by calling 307-344-2580, or on the web at http://www.inciweb.org/unit/5382/. The Point Fire may also be observed from the Fire Lookout web cam on Mount Washburn at http://www.nps.gov/yell/photosmultimedia/webcams.htm.
The fire danger rating in Yellowstone is currently “Very High,” and continued warm and dry weather with little precipitation is predicted for the next week. Visitors are encouraged to be careful with campfires, grills, camp stoves and smoking materials. There have been 18 fires reported in Yellowstone this year.