This map provided by the Great Basin National Incident Management Team 1 shows the perimeter of the Caribou Lake Fire, burning about 25 miles northeast of Homer, Alaska. (Image courtesy Great Basin National Incident Management Team 1)

This map provided by the Great Basin National Incident Management Team 1 shows the perimeter of the Caribou Lake Fire, burning about 25 miles northeast of Homer, Alaska. (Image courtesy Great Basin National Incident Management Team 1)

North Fork Fire nears containment; Ready alert canceled

Caribou Lake Fire continues to grow slowly

The North Fork Fire between Anchor Point and Homer is nearing full containment and the Ready alert for people living in that area has been canceled.

Public Information Officer Sarah Saarloos with the Alaska Division of Forestry said the Level 1 “Ready” notice was lifted at 10 a.m. Friday. The North Fork Fire is 75% contained, she said.

“And the crews are looking at reaching that goal of 100 percent containment by the end of shift tomorrow (Saturday),” Saarloos said.

The crews fighting the North Fork Fire are Anchor Point Emergency Services, the Homer Volunteer Fire Department, the Zigzag Hotshot crew from Washington and Alaska’s Yukon Type 2 Initial Attack Crew. The North Fork Fire is in the Kachemak Emergency Services area, but KES firefighters have been deployed to the Caribou Lake Fire.

“They’ve been mopping in front of the containment line about 50-75 feet,” Saarloos said. “What that means is extinguishing any remaining heat that is burning deep into the moss and being able to make sure that that whole perimeter of the fire is cold.”

The Caribou Lake Fire burning 25 miles northeast of Homer is going to take more time and effort to bring under control. It’s currently 20% contained and estimated at 848 acres. This is a more accurate measure, Saarloos said, because now that the Caribou Lake Fire is being commanded by the Great Basin National Incident Management Team 1 — the same team commanding the Swan Lake Fire between Sterling and Cooper Landing — crews were able to take a flight with infrared equipment Thursday night to get a more accurate mapping of the fire perimeter.

“The Caribou Lake Fire burned in a very mosaic pattern, and it’s burning very deep,” Saarloos said.

This means it’s going to take a lot of manual labor and a whole lot of water to bring it under control. The crews fighting this fire — Alaska smokejumpers from the Bureau of Land Management, the Redding Hotshots from California and members from the local Kachemak Emergency Services — are continuing their work on the ground as well as using aviation resources for water dumping, Saarloos said.

Because this is a full suppression fire, the end goal is 100% containment, Saarloos said. It’s estimated that full containment will be achieved by Sept. 4, and that’s based on information coming directly from the field, she said.

Several additional firefighting crews arrived on the peninsula within the last day or so, and they will be divided up between the Swan Lake Fire and the Caribou Lake Fire, Saarloos said.

There are currently no Ready notices or alerts from the Kenai Peninsula Borough for people on the southern Kenai Peninsula due to the Caribou Lake Fire, she said.

For more information, check the Alaska Interagency Fire Information Office at 907-356-5511 or visit Additional updates on the Caribou Lake Fire will be posted on InciWeb, or Incident Information System, at

Reach Megan Pacer at

North Fork Fire nears containment; Ready alert canceled

More in News

Alaska Rep. David Eastman, a Republican from Wasilla, sits at his desk on the Alaska House floor in Juneau, Alaska, on March 5, 2020. Alaska lawmakers are discussing whether to sanction Eastman who is also a member of the Oath Keepers far-right paramilitary organization according to the Anchorage Daily News. Eastman, who is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy, confirmed with the Associated Press, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022, that he joined the Oath Keepers a little over 12 years ago, “along with 38,000 others who have committed to honoring oaths we have taken.” (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer, File)
State lawmaker could be sanctioned over Oath Keeper ties

Eastman was identified as a “life member” of the Oath Keepers last year

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
As cases surge, public health officials contemplate how to live with virus

Contact tracing and data collection will have to be reworked if COVID is here to stay

Upper Cook Inlet Exclusive Economic Zone can be seen on this map provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. (Image via
Soldotna approves filing of EEZ lawsuit brief

The lawsuit seeks to reopen commercial salmon fishing in the Upper Cook Inlet Exclusive Economic Zone

University of Alaska Interim President Pat Pitney, bottom left, spoke to UA students in a virtual forum on Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022, and was joined by several UA administrators including UA Southeast President Karen Carey, bottom left, and UA Anchorage Vice Chancellor Bruce Schultz, top left. At top right, an American Sign Language professional provides translation services. (Screenshot)
UA President: University has turned a corner on funding

System sees modest increase in budget for first time in years

Sen. Shelley Hughes, R-Palmer; Senate President Peter Micciche, R-Soldotna; Sen. Gary Stevens, R-Kodiak and Sen. Click Bishop, R-Fairbanks, spoke to reporters Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2022, immediately following Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s State of the State address. Members of the Senate Republican leadership said they appreciated the governor’s optimism, and hoped it signaled a better relationship between the administration and the Legislature. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Lawmakers welcome tone change in governor’s address

With caveats on financials, legislators optimistic about working together

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
COVID deaths, hospitalizations climb statewide

The total number of statewide COVID deaths is nearly equivalent to the population of Funny River.

A fisher holds a reel on the Kenai River near Soldotna on June 30, 2021. (Photo by Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Restrictions on sport fishing announced

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced summer sport fishing regulations Wednesday

Community agencies administer social services to those in need during the Project Homeless Connect event Soldotna Regional Sports Complex in Soldotna on Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2022. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
‘It’s nice to be able to help folks’

Project Homeless Connect offers services, supplies to those experiencing housing instability

Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce attends the March 2, 2021, borough assembly meeting at the Betty J. Glick Assembly Chambers at the Borough Administration Building in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Former talk-show host to manage Pierce gubernatorial campaign

Jake Thompson is a former host of KSRM’s Tall, Dark and Handsome Show and Sound-off talk-show

Most Read