The Whitewater fire is burning in the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness area. The USFS's general policy for wildfires in wilderness areas is to monitor and let them burn...it's very hard to build containment lines around a fire in areas without roads, and much more dangerous for firefighters traveling on foot. When the fires break out of wilderness areas or threaten structures, firefighting efforts increase. They are particularly concerned with this fire getting to the highway and jumping the road. BTW, this is on the westward/windward/wetter side of the Cascades, but probably in the mixed conifer forest that is really dense with small trees stressed by competition & drought stress.
Here's the incident info on this fire: https://inciweb.nwcg...incident/5420/#
The October 31st 'containment' date most likely means that they expect this to smolder all summer until the fall rains come and extinguish it for good. How active it is before then will depend on weather & fuel availability at the edge of the fire. I am moderately hopeful that it will quiet down after it burns through all of the most flammable fuels and runs into natural barriers (wetter vegetation, creeks, ridges, previously burnt areas, etc.), so that little smoke is produced. Failing that, I hope we get some easterly winds to keep the smoke out of Madras (where I will be for totality ).
Edited by astrobug, 06 August 2017 - 05:04 PM.