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UPDATED Fire Crews Winding Down: "They Caught This One Really Quick"

David Winegar

With the Parleys Canyon Fire in a hard-to-reach area, a fire crew of 20 hiked in and camped overnight to save the time and work of hauling tools, gear and themselves up the mountainside Friday morning. 

By Friday afternoon, the fire was contained.

Mike Eriksson, area manager for the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands, said assessing the fire had been impossible the past couple days due to the storms.

"In the past couple days all we've been just doing is driving from the areas that we can get close enough you know getting out binoculars and looking at stuff, it's just been too wet, too bad of weather to get in there even for firefighters - firefighters are a pretty tough group, but that was some nasty weather the past three days," Eriksson said.

While the wet conditions and lightning have hampered firefighters’ work, the rain has aided tremendously in stopping the fire from spreading and getting it extinguished.

Eriksson said firefighting efforts are measured first in containment percentages, then control, before finally being declared out.

Considering a fire completely out can take a surprisingly long time.

"Though I have seen fires make it through the winter, it'll be burning in some logs all winter long. And then it melts off and the spring comes and starts and goes again," he said. "But I don't anticipate that be the case for this one. It's just a small- relatively small, I mean it was a big fire for anybody who lived there in Summit Park, but compared to a lot of others, they caught this one really quick."

He said the Parleys Canyon Fire’s relatively small size means it’s likely to be considered fully out Labor Day weekend. He expects a new containment number to come over the weekend.

Also, he said forest service trails in the area are open now, on the back side of Lamb's Canyon, but Summit Park's trail system remains closed and is being controlled.

Michelle, who joined KPCW in 2021, arrived in Utah in 2018 by way of Massachusetts, where the skiing was icy and the mosquitoes formidable. A former daily newspaper reporter and editor (at the Visalia Times-Delta in CA) and columnist (at The Cohasset Mariner in MA), Michelle has been a writer and editor for decades. She holds a journalism degree from CSU Fresno and has worked as a journalist, freelance writer and web content creator, reporting extensively on education and youth along with general assignment and breaking news.