Map: Wild and prescribed fires for July 21, 2010. Courtesy NPS.
Two lightning caused fires were discovered Monday along the north rim of the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne. Smoke was reported visible from the east near the Waterwheel Fall area. The fires are believed to have been caused by a lightning strikes during last weeks thunderstorms along the Sierra Crest.
The two fires are within 2 miles of each other at the 8000-foot level.Both are in designated wilderness areas within the Tuolumne County portion of Yosemite National Park. Firefighters were flown into the fire area July 20 to monitor the fires and gather data to assess the fires spread potential. Additionally, they will monitor the fires behavior, collect adjacent fuels and other vegetation information, determine fuel moistures, locate natural fire barriers, and place trail warning signs as needed.
Tuolumne Fire: It is 1/10 of an acre and west of the Wildcat 2 fire and Rodgers Creek. It has a slight to moderate potential to spread. Light smoke was visible. It is burning in short needle conifer vegetation and brush, on a south aspect.
Wildcat 2 Fire: It is 2.8 acres and has moderate potential to spread with light smoke visible. It is on the south side of Register Creek and north of last summer’s Wildcat fire. It is also burning in short needle conifer and brush, on a south aspect. Seventy-five percent of the perimeter is active and mostly burning the brush.
A third fire is burning in the suppression zone located south of Yosemite Valley near Glacier Point.
Footbridge Fire: This .10 acre fire was discovered July 20 in the Mariposa County section of Yosemite National Park. The fire is burning in heavy fuels (standing dead trees) and producing light smoke is visible from Glacier point. The fire is near the Snow Creek footbridge and is northwest of Basket Dome. It is within the suppression zone, and is being put out by Helicopter 551 and helitack hand-crews. The cause of the fire is yet unknown.