EUGENE, Ore. — Several lightning-caused wildfires in central and southern Oregon have grown dramatically, prompting fire officials to enforce closures and evacuations across the state. Firefighters have had to deal with difficult terrain, dry weather conditions and thick vegetation at many of the fire locations.
There are thunderstorms predicted for Sunday night in some parts of the state. The weather forecast for the area where Oregon, California and Nevada converge calls for hot, dry weather through Friday.
The massive Holloway fire in southeast Oregon continued to grow, but only marginally, wildfire managers said Sunday.
The fire has burned 279 square miles of brush and sagebrush in Oregon and 218 square miles in Nevada.
No occupied homes are threatened in the sparsely populated area, but the fire concerns a ranching community that lost much of its summer forage in the recent Long Draw fire. Fire spokesman Jack deGolia said several abandoned homes are threatened.
Another fire representative, Alexis West, said there was not much growth in the blaze Sunday but adds that a shift in wind expected later could test fire lines.
Lightning has been a common theme in the cause of dozens of fires in Oregon started last weekend.
One of those fires is the Buckhead Complex fire, made up of 15 fires burning in the Willamette National Forest near Oakridge. Flyover surveillance taken near Oakridge Friday gave fire officials a better glimpse of the fires started Sunday by a lightning storm.
The fire has caused local road and trail closures, as well as restricting traffic to the Oakridge airport. The U.S. Forest Service currently lists the fire as 515 contained and burning 136 acres in the area north of Oakridge. There are currently 216 firefighters and crew members fighting the blaze that is burning through the difficult timber terrain.
The Barry Point Fire has burned nearly 36 square miles, or 23,000 acres, as of Sunday near the Drews Reservoir area in southern Oregon. Authorities have issued a level three evacuation for residents around the reservoir, because of an "immediate threat to life and safety" from the lightning caused fire.
Fire spokeswoman Renee Snyder said an evacuation notice remained in effect for about 15 homes near Drews Reservoir. Residents in another 30 homes have been advised they might receive such a notice and should have a plan in place if the situation worsens.
The National incident Management Organization plans to hold the current fire lines while continuing to mop up the western and northwestern lines, with winds predicted blowing the fire in that direction early next week.
They also are preparing contingency lines to stop the fire if it breaks past current lines.
The fire started Monday about 20 miles southwest of Lakeview and is listed as 25 percent contained on Sunday. There are 1,112 fire crew personnel and resources working the fire.
Ten Mile Complex:
Along the Idaho border in the far eastern part of the state, firefighters said they had established containment lines around some of the fires in the Ten Mile Complex fire south of Vale, listed at just over 9,000 acres.
Officials issued a level two evacuation for residents in the path of high winds Saturday night. They cancelled the evacuation orders Sunday morning.
There are primary fire burning in the Ten Mile complex is the Banana Lake fire, which has an area of nearly 5,000 acres. Firefighters have the fire completely surrounded, but dealt with flare-ups along the fire lines throughout Sunday.
There were 100 personnel listed as working the fire Sunday, but more firefighters were arriving throughout the weekend to assist with the fire.