Update: Newhalem “Upper Skagit Complex” Fire Information

Smoke in Newhalem Posted on: 08/21/15 04:02 pm
Smoke in Newhalem Posted on: 08/21/15 04:02 pm

Smoke in Newhalem
Posted on: 08/21/15 04:02 pm

Newhalem, WA: The following information on the Newhalem Fire, also known as the Goodell Fire, which is a part of the Upper Skagit Complex Fires has been updated as of 6:25 pm  on August 22nd, 2015 by Inci-web Incident Information Systems .



Posted on: 08/19/15 08:22 pm

Posted on: 08/19/15 08:22 pm

The Upper Skagit Complex Fires are  comprised of the Goodell Fire (3,180 acres), Klawatti Fire (10 acres), Snowfield Fire (20 acres), Neve Fire (.10 acres), Thursday Creek (273 acres), Cat Island (.25 acres), No Name 15 (3 acres), and Rocky Beaver (134 acres). This information is updated as of 3:11 pm on 8/22/15.


Posted on: 08/19/15 08:22 pm

Posted on: 08/19/15 08:22 pm

The Goodell wildfire in Newhalem is said to currently  be at 3,180 acres.  The Fire was believed to have been started by lightening and  detected on August 10th. As of August 19th it was at 80 acres. The fire has grown significantly in the last three days to the 3,180 acres it is currently at.


**Updated as of 6:25 Pm on 8/22/15: There will be a public meeting on Sunday, August 23, 2015, on the parade grounds at the Marblemount Ranger Station at 4 pm.

The planned action for firefighters is to Protect the community of Newhalem and National Park Service facilities and infrastructure as well as Seattle City Light Infrastructures.  **Updated at of 6:25 pm on 8/22: Firefighters continue working to secure the community of Newhalem; National Park Service, Seattle City Light, and Washington Department of Transportation facilities and infrastructure as well as suppression activities on the 8 wildfires within the fire complex.

Goodell Fire Posted on: 08/19/15 08:22 pm

Goodell Fire
Posted on: 08/19/15 08:22 pm

The incident is being ran by the Great Basin Incident Management Team 4. Incident Command is Chris Wilcox.

The fire is 0% Contained as of 6:22pm on 8/22.

Fire officials estimate to have the fire contained by September 13th, 2015. This could change depending on how the fire reacts to changing weather and winds in the area.

Fuels involved are said to be Timber (litter and under-story) and short grass.

**Updated as of 6:25 pm on 8/22/15: Today, firefighters took actions to hold line east of Goodell Creek, south of Terror Creek, and south and west from Stetattle Creek. Firefighters will assess structures in the towns of Newhalem and Diablo and assess plans for protection. Fire engine crews are in place, installing pumps, hoses and sprinkler systems to reduce the threat to structures in the event fire reaches them.

The weather over the next several days is expected to be Hot and dry with moderate winds.

State Route 20 remains closed in both Directions from Thornton Creek Rd (MP 118) to the Skagit County Line (MP 157) until further notice.Click to be taken to the WSDOT website.

State Route 20 is now  open from Twisp at milepost 204 to Rainy pass  at the Chelan county line at milepost 157 as of 1 pm on 8/22/15. Click to be taken to the WSDOT Website.
SR 20 is also closed to traffic in both directions from milepost 206, five miles east of Twisp, to milepost 224, nine miles west of Okanogan, due to fire activity. There is no detour available. Click to be taken to the WSDOT website.

SR 20 is also closed in Both Directions at Tonasket milepost to 263 to milepost 267 due to fire activity. No  Detour available. Updated as of 3 pm on 8/22/2015.  Click to be taken to the WSDOT website.

For the latest information about SR 20 closures, please call the North Cascades Highway Recorded Hotline at 360-707-5055.  This will be updated whenever conditions change. Do not call 911 requesting Road Closure information on HIghway 20. Save the above phone number into your cell phone and use it instead. 

Click here to be taken to the Live Webcam at the North Cascade Parks Newhalem Visitors Center. The camera is looking Northwest.


Here is a map of the fire:

Goodell Fire Map

Goodell Fire Map


The North Cascades Visitor Center at Newhalem is closed.

The Wilderness Information Center in Marblemount remains open. The Wilderness Information Center hours are from 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM Sunday through Thursday, and 7:00 AM to 8:00 PM on Friday and Saturday.

Evacuations are in place for the town Diablo, North Cascades Environmental Learning Center, and Ross Lake Resort.

The following campgrounds have all been evacuated and will be closed until further notice according to the North Cascade National Parks Website:

  • Goodell Creek Campground
  • Newhalem Creek Campground
  • Gorge Lake Campground
  • Colonial Creek Campground
The following trails are closed:
  • Big Beaver Trail south of the junction with the Pierce Mountain Trail
  • Diablo Lake Trail
  • Fourth of July Trail
  • Goode Ridge Trail
  • Happy Panther Trail
  • Little Beaver Trail east of the junction with the Big Beaver Trail
  • Newhalem Area Trails (Ladder Creek Falls Trail, Linking Trail, Lower Newhalem Creek Trail, River Loop Trail, Rock Shelter Trail, To Know A Tree Trail, and Trail of the Cedars)
  • Newhalem Creek Trail
  • Park Creek Trail
  • Pierce Mountain Trail
  • Pyramid Lake Trail
  • Ross Dam Trail
  • Sourdough Mountain Trail
  • Stetattle Creek Trail
  • Thunder Creek Trail
  • Thunder Knob Trail

The Happy Creek Forest Walk is closed.

Boat in campsites on Diablo Lake are all closed.

The Goodell Creek Boat Launch is closed.

Ross Lake has not been evacuated, but is not accessible to incoming travelers.

WSDOT and Emergency Dispatchers ask that residents DO NOT call 9-1-1 to report smoke in any areas of Washington State unless you see flames and a new or fresh column of smoke.  There is a haze of smoke across the entire state and 911 calls about “smoke in the area” are tying up emergency lines.

Officials from the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT)  released the following information about the PCT. Please click here to read info on the PCT and how wildfires are affecting the trail. 


Previous Information as of August 19th, 2015: 

Marblemount, WA – The Goodell Fire burned down to and crossed State Route 20 this afternoon causing a rock slide. The Department of Transportation has closed the highway while firefighters and helicopters work to slow the fire’s spread, remove the debris and make the popular scenic route safe for travelers again. The North Cascades Visitor Center, the Upper and Lower Goodell group camps, and Newhalem Creek Campground are closed due to the fire and concern for visitor safety.
State Route 20, the North Cascades Scenic Byway, is closed from Newhalem to Rainy Pass until further notice. Evacuations are in place for the town Diablo, Gorge Campground, North Cascades Environmental Learning Center, and Ross Lake Resort.

The Goodell Fire has been backing down the ridge towards Newhalem: firefighters have an engine, a water tank and water lines in place at the southern toe of the slope to protect the town and Seattle City Light’s power infrastructure.

Today’s weather and winds pushed the fire both east and west and down-slope to the highway.The Goodell Fire was detected on August 10 and was estimated approximately eighty acres


Originally this Newhalem  fire was being monitored but had expected to burn itself out. There were no resources available to fight the fire as access was only via plane or helicopter. Fire resources  were focused on much larger fires in Eastern Washington.  The approval of Federal Aid is bringing in firefighters from around the world to fight all these fires. 


Discover Fire PhotoThe Jumbo Mountain Fire in Darrington is now being monitored in the same manner as it is not accessible except via plane or helicopter. 



The information has been provided by the Nwcg and WSDOT  websites.


About the Author

Chris Nelson
I'm a long time Skagit County Resident. I believe in doing the right thing and helping others when you can.

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