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Cal Fire works to contain Creek Fire

The Creek Fire, which has been burning for more than 30 days, is close to 50 percent contained, over the past week according to Cal Fire.

Cal Fire gained nine percent on the fire (up to 48 percent) while limiting damage. The fire has burned 322,089 acres, which is about 18,000 acres burnt since Sept. 28.

In Madera County, along the area of uncontained fire perimeter near Cold Springs and in close proximity to Little Shuteye Peak, firefighters are attacking the slow-moving flame front directly, according to Cal Fire. All other lines along the west flank, south of Globe Rock are in patrol status.

Good containment has been achieved along northern fire perimeters in the vicinity of Red Top Peak where active gridding (fire fighters moving through the area ensuring embers in the duff located and extinguished) and mop up are ongoing.

Resources in the interior of the fire, including The Road Group continued to drop hazard trees (snagging) and clear roads of debris, as well as maintain a watch over unburned fuels in Arnold and Johnson Meadows.

The last structure assessments are also taking place in the northern interior. Seasonal and fire-induced loss of needles and leaves provides an additional opportunity for reignition within already burned areas. Crews are assessing and clearing the lines of these new flammable materials to ensure the fire does not move into unburned areas (green islands), and reduce the opportunity for slop overs and spots.

The fire is still 10-12 miles west of Mammoth Lakes and little forward progression is occurring due to the natural barriers of rock and the Lions Fire (2018) burn scar. Conditions continue to be monitored very closely.

Cattle in and around the fire area are being rounded up and moved. Be aware of cattle, those working with them, fire personnel and other hazardous conditions when returning to the fire impacted area once it re-opens.

The Sierra National Forest will allow individuals who were evacuated from campgrounds, camping areas and cabins in the South Zone of the fire an opportunity to return and collect their belongings this weekend. Additional dates and northern access will be added as permit requests dictate.

However, Sierra National Forest announced it will remain fully closed through Nov. 1, while Yosemite National Park reopened last week.

Personnel fighting the fire has dropped dramatically in the past two weeks from more than 3,200 firefighters to 2,066, as of Monday. There have been 865 structures destroyed and 71 more damaged.

There are still 173 engines, 13 helicopters, 12 dozers and 37 water tenders working on the blaze, but all of the numbers have fallen in the past two weeks.

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