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Fishhawk Fire

Smoke from the Fishhawk Fire, burning 40 miles up U.S. Highway 14/16/20 in Shoshone National Forest, creeps over Cedar Mountain on an otherwise sunny day in Cody, Wyo. on Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2019.

The Fishhawk fire burning in Wyoming near Yellowstone National Park's east entrance was 15% contained Sunday morning and an infrared flight has mapped its size at 17.45 square miles, or 11,171 acres.

The fire is burning in heavy timber and 204 firefighting personnel have been assigned to work it so far. It began burning Sept. 2 at approximately 4 p.m.

Multiple storms were expected to bring rain to the fire Sunday. The area receives about 1 inch of precipitation in September. Storms throughout the week might produce 2.5 inches of rain, according to the InciWeb fire update.

"It's been pouring the last couple of hours," said Vickie Russo, a public information officer on the fire, speaking at about 5:40 p.m. "It's gonna really help out the fire. The fire is not out. It's not going to be considered out, it's still smoldering and creeping, but it's not holding heat like it was." 

Russo, works for the Rocky Mountain Incident Management Blue team, said command of the fire would transition back to the Wapiti Ranger District of the Shoshone National Forest Monday night.

Forecasts show rain over the coming week could more than double the amount of precipitation the area 42 miles west of Cody normally sees in September, according to a fire update posted to the fire's page on InciWeb, a website operated by the National Wildfire Coordinating Group.

Containment on the fire has been focused on the north end between the fire and threatened structures, Russo said. Rugged, steep area to the south of the fire is filled with beetle-killed trees and other fuels, making it unsafe to put people on the ground.

Crews were planning to finish work at the nearby Boy Scout camp and Kitty Creek community by mid-day. Firefighters have been working to reduce fuels and clean up slash piles around structures.

The Stinkwater fire burning 35 miles northwest of Cody was estimated at 68% contained as of Saturday night. That fire has 57 personnel assigned to it and is believed to be 57 acres or .08 square miles in size. The Stinkwater fire is burning in timber. Heavy dead and downed timber is also in the fire area. The fire was reported on the afternoon of Sept. 3 in the Sulphur Creek area of the Sunlight Basin. 

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