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Lightning sparks two fires in Sequoia National Forest Kern Plateau

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Posted at 11:13 AM, Jun 19, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-19 14:20:44-04

KERNVILLE, Calif. — Lightning has sparked two fires in the Sequoia National Forest Kern Plateau.

According to the Kern River Ranger District of the Sequoia National Forest, the two fires were caused by lightening from recent thunderstorm activity that moved through the area on Monday, June 17.

The Kern River Ranger District says the fires are located in the South Sierra Wilderness, in extremely steep, rocky terrain that's proving to be difficult to access for personnel.

The first fire, the Bald Fire, was discovered around 4:36 p.m. on Monday. It is burning five miles northeast of Bald Mountain Lookout. According to the Kern River Ranger District, a single tree is on fire at an elevation of 8,200 feet in steep rocky terrain. The Kern River Ranger District says no growth has occurred for two days.

The second fire, the Lost Fire, was discovered at 10 a.m. on June 18th. It is burning east of Jackass Meadow and north of Dead Horse Meadow. The Kern River Ranger District says the Lost Fire is burning upslope at a slow rate of spread. The Lost Fire has currently burned 7.2 acres.

The Kern River Ranger District says Forest Service personnel are currently assessing a suppression strategy that will ensure firefighter safety while "providing a high probability of successful containment."

Fire aviation personnel conducted a reconnaissance flight to search for additional lightning-caused starts to monitor the two fires.