White Draw Fire, July 3 update with photos

White Draw fire, south dakota,
White Draw fire, south dakota,
White Draw Fire as seen from Red Canyon, July 2, 2012. Photo by Bill Gabbert, all rights reserved. Click HERE to get your own framed copy.

On Monday I visited the White Draw Fire in the southern Black Hills northeast of Edgemont, South Dakota. I inspected the fire, which was fairly active, and shot these photos. Type 1 crews, including the Wyoming Hot Shots, were holding and burning out line in Red Canyon. The fire spread quite a bit to the north during the last couple of days due to strong winds, and it was backing and flanking down the east-facing slopes on the west side of Red Canyon — at times rather vigorously.

White Draw Fire, July 2, 2012.
White Draw Fire, July 2, 2012. Photo by Bill Gabbert. All rights reserved.

Below is the official update on the fire provided by the Incident Management Team Monday evening:

White Draw Fire Update – 50% Containment

Edgemont, SD: The fire behavior was less significant today than the last two days. Active surface fire and some short crown runs were observed today.  However, successful burnout operations took place to secure the fire lines on the flank of the fire.  A helicopter supported the burnout operations with water drops.  The work today along with a productive night operations allowed the level of containment to reach 50%.

The fire is 4,950 acres. Currently, there are 292 personnel including two type 1 hand crews (20 people each), five type 2 hand crews, 21 crews associated with  engines, 3 dozers, and six water tenders. More crews and equipment have been ordered.

Tonight, the night operation will consist mainly of patrolling and holding the fire line that was constructed during the day.

22 structures and 31 outbuildings continue to be threatened by the fire.

After a much dryer and warmer than normal spring, firefighters are dealing with flashy fuels that ignite rapidly. Hazardous steep terrain and rattlesnakes are added additional “watch out” conditions for them to deal with.

The White Draw Fire is located approximately five miles northeast of Edgemont, burning primarily on National Forest lands in a mix of grasslands and timber.

Wyoming Hot Shots, White Draw Fire
Wyoming Hot Shots on the White Draw Fire, July 2, 2012. Photo by Bill Gabbert. All Rights reserved.
White Draw Fire, July 2, 2012
White Draw Fire, July 2, 2012. Photo by Bill Gabbert. All rights reserved.

If you like the first photo, you can get your own framed copy HERE.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

3 thoughts on “White Draw Fire, July 3 update with photos”

  1. Thank you for the wonderful pictures. My dad’s place is one of the ranches in danger up RedCanyon.

  2. My son is on an Engine from Longmont Colorado. Thanks for keeping us posted and up to date. I am a retired United Airline Capt., and reading about the
    C-130 was very sad……………….Thanks,


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