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Rim fire update for August 31, 2013

August 31, 2013

Inciweb.org reports, "Last night a spot fire crossed Old Yosemite Road, prompting an expansion of the Mandatory Evacuation in Mariposa County. Crews burned south from Hetch Hetchy toward Harden Lake on the eastern flank. Crews continued structure defense in the Highway 108 and 120 corridors, and around Cherry Lake. Today's operations will included actions to control the spot fire south of Old Yosemite Road. Crews will also begin a burning operation from Duckwall Mountain north to Fahey Meadow along Forest Road 3N07and will continue a burning operation in Yosemite National Park near Harden Lake and south to White Wolf and to Tioga Road. Aircraft will continue to support burning operations."

The nearly 220,000 acre fire is currently 35% contained and a new containment date of October 20, 2013 has been set forth by fire officials. The fire burned about 300 acres an hour on average during the 24-hour span ending Wednesday evening (Aug. 28), down from 1,000 acres an hour the day before. At its peak the week before it was burning more than 3,000 acres an hour. The reason for the slowdown is as much weather related as anything else. Temperatures have cooled and the humidity has risen making the area not as much a tinder box as it had been earlier.

Smoke from the fire will continue to clog the air in Reno and Lake Tahoe, the National Weather Service predicts. The Rim Fire is currently the fifth largest fire in state history.

This natural-color satellite image was collected by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard the Aqua satellite on August 30, 2013. Actively burning areas, detected by MODIS's thermal bands, are outlined in red.
-end-
NASA image courtesy Jeff Schmaltz LANCE/EOSDIS MODIS Rapid Response Team, GSFC. Caption by Lynn Jenner with information from Inciweb.org

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

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