Blaze only 8 percent contained yesterday

Firefighters assess the Miriam fire from an overlook last Friday.

Credit: Courtesy of Justin Gelb
Firefighters assess the Miriam fire from an overlook last Friday.

Target shooting banned on DNR-managed land

The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has banned all target shooting on 3 million acres of DNR-managed lands, including state forests, community forests and forested state lands as of Aug. 4.

“I know this is an inconvenience to our recreational shooters, but current conditions require us to take reasonable steps to reduce wildfire risk,” Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz said.

Shooting at targets poses greater risk in dry conditions as bullets pass through decayed wood, cause sparks off rocks or break into fragments in dry grass.

This temporary rule does not restrict hunting, as firearms are discharged less frequently.

Washington is extremely hot and dry, with ninety-six percent of the state in drought-like conditions. Vegetation is very dry and getting drier.

The ban is expected to be until Sept. 30.

Target shooters are urged to use private and public target range facilities.

As of yesterday, the Miriam Fire consuming forested area near White Pass Ski Area was only at 8 percent containment.

The wildfire, which started July 30, was reported at 1,200 acres with additional firefighters arriving Monday.

Lightning is believed responsible for the fire, according to officials. They believe the conflagration will not be completely contained until Sept. 1.

There are five 20-person crews, three helicopters, 17 engines, two bulldozers and 295 personnel working the fire.

Heavy equipment continues to improve Forest Roads for use as containment lines.

Structure protection efforts began around the cabins at Rimrock Lake yesterday.

Fire managers are developing strategies to contain the fire on the north and west flanks within Goat Rocks Wilderness.

Firing operations along the hand and dozer lines were established in the Hell Creek drainage, and continue south.

Aircraft are being used to slow and check the increasingly active fire, while firefighters work to complete containment lines.

Due to the warmer weather early this week with an expected cooling pattern late in the week, officials say smoky conditions downwind and in local areas may increase.

Evacuations in the White Pass, Rimrock Lake and Clear Lake areas remain in place.


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