Forest Falls, CA – UPDATE 11:00AM – The Valley Fire is now at 1,341 acres with 13% containment. Several thunderstorms passed through the lower elevations of the Valley Fire area resulting in some flooding and debris flows. However, the higher elevations of the fire have not seen significant rainfall and continue to burn. The fire is moving north and east, higher into the San Gorgonio Wilderness area. Firefighting resources will continuing to arrive on the fire today, including specialized Hot Shot crews, a 20-person hand crew who are able to work in steep, remote terrain with limited support. There are currently 612 personnel actively fight this fire, including 39 engines, 14 crews, 5 water-tender, 2 dozers, and 9 helicopters. Southern California Incident Management Team 2 is in command of the fire.
Forest Falls, CA – UPDATE 9am – Highway 38 will now be closed only from Bryant Avenue to Angelus Oaks. Highway 38 Between Lake Williams Drive and Angelus Oaks is open, however access will only be through Big Bear. There will be no public access between Valley of the Falls Drive and Angelus Oaks on Hwy 38 due to the mudslides and fire activity along Highway 38. Mountain Home and Forest Falls evacuations have been lifted, however residents only with ID and proof of residency will through the road closure. All hiking trails accessing the San Gorgonio Wilderness Area are closed.
Forest Falls, CA – UPDATE 6:45 AM Fire officials are expecting more acreage burned today as temperatures and wind conditions rise. Smoke and ash is expected throughout the day but there is no immediate threat to Big Bear at this time. Meteorologist Ben Brissey is predicting that higher humidity and a chance of afternoon thunderstorms should help the 500 plus firefighters in their efforts. Highway 38 remains closed to all access from Lake Williams Drive in Big Bear to Bryant Street Yucaipa and mandatory evacuations for Forest Falls Valley remain in place.
Forest Falls, CA – UPDATE 10:30 PM Valley Fire is now 1,000 acres. Smoke and ash will continue to be in the air over Big Bear Valley throughout the night. The fire is moving north and east, higher into the San Gorgonio Wilderness Area. Fire will remain active throughout the night, and will be visible to many in the Inland Empire. Firefighting resources will continue to work overnight, including structure defense and security. Highway 38 from Bryant Street to Lake Williams Drive remains closed to all access including residents. There are currently over 500 personnel actively fight this fireincluding 21 Engines, 2 Crews, 1 Water-tender, and 2 Fixed-wings. A Type 2 Management Team as been order to take command of the fire.
UPDATE 4:46 PM The Valley Fire started at approximately 1:30 PM on July 6th and is currently 200 acres in size, with zero percent containment. Forest Falls Community east of Highway 38 is under mandatory evacuation orders and the evacuation center is the Inland Leaders Charter School-12375 California Street, Yucaipa CA 93299 Animals are not being accepted at this time. Highway 38 from Bryant Street (Yucaipa) to Lake Williams Drive (South of Big Bear) closed to all access including residents.
Drones pose a serious risk to firefighting and can cause air operations to cease. When drones interfere with firefighting efforts, a wildfire has the potential to grow larger and cause more damage.
UPDATE: 3:48PM – Mandatory evacuations called for Forest Falls Valley.
UPDATE: 3:37pm – Mandatory evacuations have been ordered for residents of Forest Falls and Forest Home.
UPDATE 3:17pm. The Valley Fire started today at approximately 1:30 pm. The fire is currently at 100 acres in size, with zero percent containment. Smoke from the fire may be visible in Big Bear. Highway 38 is currently closed in both directions from Lake Williams to Bryant at the bottom of the mountain. The Valley Fire is in the vicinity of Forest Falls. Evacuations have been called for Momyer Trail and Vivian Creek in that area. Resources have been ordered and are arriving on scene to start fire suppression efforts. The fire is not a threat to the Big Bear Valley.