Rough Fire destroys Kings Canyon Lodge

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The Kings Canyon Lodge is destroyed by the Rough Fire, and the blaze continues to threaten other homes and cabins in the area. (Action News reporter Veronica Miracle)

An iconic lodge is destroyed by the Rough Fire, and the blaze continues to threaten other homes and cabins in the area.

The fire is now 47,079 acres and just barely contained at 3 percent. More than 2,200 firefighters are on the ground and in the air trying to keep it from spreading further.

There's not much to salvage at the Kings Canyon Lodge. The gas pump from the '20s might be the only relic left.

"The gas pumps are still there; they made it through the fire. That's kind of a miracle if you want to ask me. Thank you, Lord," said Kings Canyon Lodge owner Carla Evans.

The lodge and six cabins surrounding it are the first casualties of the Rough Fire. Lewis Evans has been here since he was 3. The land was passed down from his father. The lodge wasn't insured.

The owner says this lodge was built in 1937. Many of the items in here were antiques -- too old to even try and replace. Now the fight is shifting uphill. Firefighters are burning along this area on purpose. It's to eliminate the threat and stop the fire from reaching Hume at the east end and a power plant at the west end.

"We have an expectation of what we thing is going to come; we're making plans accordingly. We also have in place contingency plans," said fire information officer Michelle Eidam.

But for one family the plan now is to figure out what's next.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the owners of the Kings Canyon Lodge. Click here for more information.

A community meeting for those affected by the Rough Fire will be held Sunday afternoon in Shaver Lake. It starts at 3 p.m. at the PG&E Helms Headquarters located at 67250 Helms Circle.



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INCIDENT OVERVIEW:
The Rough Fire is currently 47,079 acres with 3% containment and 2,275 personnel. For a progression map of the Rough Fire.

The suppression strategy for the Rough Fire will utilize a combination of direct, indirect and point protection. A key element of the plan is flexibility and the ability to apply the right resource, to the right task, at the right time, for the right duration. It is understood fireline will be constructed only where it is feasible and safe to do so. It is the responsibility of the Incident Commander and their staff to work with the Agency Administrators to ensure the plan is regularly reviewed and updated.

The Rough Fire began July 31, 2015. On Tuesday afternoon the Rough Fire spotted across the South Fork of the Kings River and crossed highway 180, in the area of Horseshoe Bend and became established in the Lockwood Creek Drainage. As a result of the fire crossing the river, the pre-planned evacuation of the Hume Lake area was implemented. Over 2,500 campers, hikers, employees, and residents were notified and safely evacuated from Hume Lake Christian Camp, private cabins, campgrounds, and the surrounding area in just over 2 1.2 hours.

CLOSURES:
As the fire spread on Wednesday, the existing closure orders were expanded to include almost the entire Hume Lake Ranger District. The current closure is defined in Forest Order 15-19, which closes these areas for public safety:

- Most of the Hume Lake Ranger District from Delilah Rd. on the west to Jennie Lakes and Monarch Wildernesses to the east; and from Hwy 180 in the south to the Forest boundary to the north. Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks issued a closure of the Cedar Grove area and the Grant Grove area.
- Sierra National Forest issued a closure order for the Rough Fire Area.
- Black Rock Campground and Forest Road 11S12 (also called Black Rock Road) is closed between Balch Camp and McKinley Road.
- Sequoia National Forest issued a closure order for the Hume Lake Ranger District, Jenny Lakes Wilderness and Monarch Wilderness, including Forest Road 12S01, 12S01E, and 12S19 in the Sequoia Highlands area.
- The Hume Lake recreation area is closed, as is Hwy 180 beyond the junction of Hwy 198 (Generals Highway).

CURRENT SITUATION:
Total Personnel: 2,275
Size: 47,079 acres
Percent of Perimeter Contained: 3 percent
Related Topics:
wildfireforest firebrush firefireevacuationfirefightersfresno countyHume LakeKings Canyon National ParkSequoia National Park
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