Firefighters continue battling 60acre wildfire
Fire crews overnight kept watch on the 60-acre Hilltop Fire in the Yacolt Burn State Forest, monitoring hot spots and digging fire lines.This morning, 150 firefighters are fighting the fire on Larch Mountain, which is 10 miles east of Hockinson. Firefighters are working steep terrain four miles east of the Larch Corrections Center.Fire officials said this morning the blaze remains about 28 percent contained. “They’ll get started increasing that (figure) as the day goes on,” said Seth Barnes with the State Department of Natural Resources. “If the plans all go the way we’d like them to, we’ll have a bigger number by this evening.”Two helicopters and an air tanker are dropping water and retardant on the ridge off the L1500 forest road.Eight fire engine crews and three water tenders are working on the fire.Besides water, firefighters were using shovels, axes, pulaskies, hoes and chain saws to try to stop the blaze. Crews plan to use a technique called a “burnout” to remove unburned fuel from the fire, according to an update provided by the Department of Natural Resources. The procedure may increase visible smoke in the Vancouver and Portland metro areas. The land is mostly owned by Longview Timber.No homes are believed to be in danger as the -nearest houses are 2.7 miles to the south near the Jones Creek -Campground.For up-to-date information on the fire, call 360-448-6494.