Fire continues to burn near Mount Adams

By Paul Suarez, Columbian web producer

Published:

 
Cascade Creek fire

A two-week firefighting effort to control a blaze burning near Mount Adams has cost an estimated $7,172,000.

Most of that expense is due to having multiple helicopters on scene, said Cynthia Bork, spokeswoman for the firefighting effort.

A lightning strike on Sept. 9 sparked the Cascade Creek fire in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. As of Monday morning, the fire has burned 13,727 acres of heavy, bug-killed timber and is 40 percent contained.

No one has been evacuated due to the fire, but a portion of the Pacific Crest Trail and the Mt. Adams Wilderness are closed.

After two weeks fighting the fire, the command staff was rotated out on Monday, which is typical for these type of fires, spokeswoman Bork said.

About 400 firefighters are assigned to the blaze. Standing dead and dying trees are a big danger, Bork said.

The priority is to keep fires from moving est onto the Yakama Nation and state and private lands.

Weather may be on firefighters' side. Monday's forecast calls for highs between 55 and 65 degrees and a chance for light rain.