Good News, Bad News
Well, the good news is Saturday night we received .42 inches of rain at the Seagull Guard Station. Rain wasn’t even in the forecast so it was a pleasant surprise to wake up and see a wet deck.
The bad news is lightning accompanied the rain we got and started a couple of fires on the Gunflint Trail. We received e-mails on Sunday afternoon from the USFS explaining the fire situation.
We have a single tree lightning strike fire on East Bearskin Lake. Fire was from last night’s storm. Paddlers discovered the fire at approximately 9am on Sept. 2nd. No open flames were visible, only smoke. We dispatched a small crew to extinguish the fire.
There are two more fires to report. One on Clearwater Lake at T65N R1E Sec 31. Small lightning strike in the rocks and burning duff. The second is on Otto Lake, just north of Winchell Lake T64N R2W Sec 28. This is two single tree lightning strikes on the south side of the lake. We have an engine checking in on the fire near Clearwater and two personnel flying into Otto Lake presently.
We picked up another lightning strike fire near Tucker Lake on the south shore. T64N R3W Sec 2. Single tree. We have helicopter 2-4-H working buckets on it presently and a two person crew enroute.
August has been a very dry month on the Gunflint Trail. I have records from the past 10 years and it is the driest August yet with only 1.55 inches of rain measured at mid-trail. The weather has been windy which tends to dry the land quickly. It has also been quite sunny and warm over the weekend; good for campers, bad for Smoky the Bear. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for more good news and less bad news.