As many may have guessed from the smoke in the air, the Tehipite Fire, burning over the Sierra crest west of Big Pine, is growing in size.
The lightning caused Tehipite Fire started in mid- July. Wednesday of last week the fire was listed as 1600 acres in size. By Friday, the fire had grown to 2400 acres. Tuesday, of this week, fire officials listed the Tehipite at over 4300 acres.
For the past six weeks the fire has slowly smoldered through dense brush and downed vegetation along the rocky slopes above the middle fork of the Kings River. Since the fire has hit the flatter, thickly forested terrain above the Tehipite Valley, the fire has picked up.
Fire officials say that in the last several days, the fire has shown increased activity and growth including within the Scepter and Crown Creek drainages on the Sierra National Forest and northwest of Tehipite Valley and north to Kettle Dome in Kings Canyon National Park.
The fire is burning in old growth mixed conifer, red fir, lodgepole pine, and live oak between 4,000 8,500 feet in elevation on steep cliffs. Fire officials with Sequoia Kings Canyon National Park say that like any natural fire, the Tehipite Fires range of behavior includes slow creeping growth punctuated by periods of accelerated spread when weather conditions, available fuels, and topography allow.
With no immediate threat to lives or property, fire fighters are monitoring the fire, meaning that the fire is expected to burn out into rocky terrain or burn until the snow flies.
To view the fire live, click on the Buck Rock webcam.