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More Miles Fire evacuations reduced

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office reduced evacuations caused by the Miles fire in the Trail and Lost Creek Lake areas Tuesday morning.

Addresses along Highway 62 — odd numbers from the 26300 through the 31600 block, specifically — have moved from a level 2 “be set” to a level 1 “be ready” alert, as did Elk Creek Road addresses from the highway to the 1200 block. All addresses on Takelma Drive and Cole M. Rivers Road were also shifted from a level 2 to a level 1.

Evacuations in the Prospect area, several of which were reduced yesterday, remained unchanged.

Elk Creek Road upwards of the 1600 block remained on level 2 evacuation warning and the 5700 block and above remain on a level 3 “go” evacuation. All addresses on Sugar Pine Road and Dodes Creek Road are also at a level 3, as is the Alco Creek Road area (updated).

You can access an interactive fire map to check specific addresses for evacuation status at https://bit.ly/2uUku2C.

Recreation areas around Lost Creek Lake are open, including Joseph H. Stewart State Park, Casey State Park, Rogue Elk County Park and the Elk Creek Recreation Area. Kimberly Nelson, public information officer with the Forest Service, said even the areas under level 2 evacuations north of Lost Creek Lake are open to visitors.

"That Lost Creek Lake area is open and there shouldn’t be any concern," Nelson said.

The Miles Fire Information Facebook page posted a video Monday that featured aerial views of fire retardant lines.

In a Tuesday morning update, Operations Section Chief Mike Granger said that crews were hoping to establish control lines in the Alco Creek area to halt the fire's spread southwest.

"The last part of the southern part of the fire that doesn't have control lines is right here in this Alco Rock area," Granger said. "That is hopefully going to be lined today...we're hoping that that will be reported by the end of the day."

The Miles Fire grew from 30,974 acres to 31,544 by Tuesday. But containment also increased from 10 to 12 percent.

The Round Top Fire, which reached 154 acres Monday, was removed from the multi-fire conflagration in the northwest section of Jackson County that still includes the Miles, Columbus and Snow Shoe fires. The Snow Shoe fire was 95 percent contained Tuesday.

On the Klondike Fire, burning close enough to the Taylor Creek Fire that updates for both fires come jointly, crews focused on strengthening containment lines between the blaze and a few small communities: Selma, Wonder, Wilderville and Agness. Its acreage did not grow between Monday and Tuesday, according to the daily update from the Joint Information Center: 55,248 acres remained 15 percent contained as of Tuesday afternoon.

Tuesday afternoon, Sam Harrel with the Alaska Incident Management Team delivered a video update saying that crews would wait until the evening, when cooler temperatures could keep fire activity low, to conduct burnout operations intended to protect private property west of the river along Mike’s Gulch.

The fire camp for the Taylor Creek Fire also moved Tuesday from Merlin to Lake Selmac.

The Jackson County Sheriff's Office reduced more evacuation notices due to the Miles Fire on Aug. 14. Photo courtesy of the Sheriff's Office.