Steep Terrain Challenging Firefighters

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ROGUE RIVER, Ore. – People living near another lightning-sparked wildfire have been told to be ready to leave if conditions worsen.

The Old Blue Mountain Fire was sparked by lightning Monday night, about eight miles south of Rogue River. The fire has burned about 60 acres, and is 15 percent contained.

Level 1 evacuation notices have been issued for all homes on the left fork of Humbug Creek Road and the main fork of Humbug Creek Road between address 2542 and the dirt road portion. The notice means people living in those areas need to be ready to leave if the fire grows toward homes.

A roadblock is also in place for the right fork of Foots Creek Road, and the road is only open to people who live there and fire traffic.

200 firefighters are on scene, and multiple helicopters and air tankers are dropping water and fire retardant on the flames.

The fire area is near an old logging site with minimal access, and one of the toughest challenges for fire crews is battling the topography.

“It’s extremely steep terrain,” said Public Information Officer Don Hickman. “Now we’re dealing with some afternoon winds, and folks are climbing up and down these hills, so it’s quite a job.”

Fire crews will stay on scene overnight Tuesday to continue to build fire lines.