Image: Devil's Elbow Complex in Washington state

August 11, 2014
This natural-color satellite image was collected by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer aboard the Terra satellite on August 10, 2014. Actively burning areas, detected by MODIS's thermal bands, are outlined in red. Credit: NASA image courtesy Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team.

The Devil's Elbow Complex is four wildfires that are located on the Colville Indian Reservation in northeastern Washington. They were detected on August 3, but were likely ignited by lightning that passed through the area on August 2.

Three fires are in the San Poil River Valley, approximately 10-12 miles north of the town of Keller, WA. These are the Cub Creek Fire (165), the Central Peak Fire (160), and the Deadhorse Fire (164). They are burning timber, grass, brush, litter, and heavy slash that resulted from a local wind storm two years ago. The terrain is very steep and rocky. They have burned over 17,000 acres. The three fires have merged.

Approximately 150 homes and 90 other structures are located nearby in the San Poil Valley along Highway 21 and are threatened. Evacuations are in place for Capoose Creek to the Bear Creek Campground. Evacuation notices are also in effect to the north and south of this area.

The Timm Brothers Ranch Fire has burned approximately 250 acres near the Columbia River, about 20 miles north of Nespelem, WA. It was primarily burning grass and brush. It is being mopped up.

Active fire behavior expected on all uncontrolled fronts. Two major flaming fronts area producing pyrocumulus clouds to 15,000 feet. Fire is fuel driven and very reactive to stability. Fire will likely continue to advance to the north at 0.5-1 mile per day without containment. Current containment of the complex is at 4%. The weather is expected to remain hot and dry with variable wind directions and speeds.

Explore further: Fires in Idaho

Related Stories

Fires in Idaho

July 22, 2013

Forest fires continue to plague the hot, dry western part of the United States this summer. In Idaho, several fires were spotted by NASA's Aqua satellite on July 20, 2013. Actively burning areas, detected by MODIS's thermal ...

NASA image: Fires in Idaho and Montana

August 21, 2013

Fires that started in July continue on in late August in Idaho and Montana. Actively burning areas, detected by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer's (MODIS) thermal bands, are outlined in red.

NASA image: Slide Fire update May 23, 2014

May 23, 2014

The Slide Fire is located in Oak Creek Canyon just north of Slide Rock State Park and burning northward, up the canyon into places such as West Fork and Harding Point. Currently it has burned 7,500 acres and is 5% contained. ...

Dozens of fires plague Oregon

July 16, 2014

Fires are a way of life during the hot, dry summer days, but that does not mean they are ever taken for granted. Thousands of lightning strikes Sunday (7/13) and early Monday (7/14) probably started most of the wildfires, ...

Image: Fires in California and Oregon

August 4, 2014

The Little Deer fire in California began as a lightning strike on July 31, 2014. Currently it has burned 4,700 acres and is 43% contained however there has been increased humidity over the fire the last 24 hours with shifting ...

Recommended for you

Predictable ecosystems may be more fragile

October 7, 2015

When it comes to using our natural resources, human beings want to know what we're going to get. We expect clean water every time we turn on the tap; beaches free of algae and bacteria; and robust harvests of crops, fish ...

History shows more big wildfires likely as climate warms

October 5, 2015

The history of wildfires over the past 2,000 years in a northern Colorado mountain range indicates that large fires will continue to increase as a result of a warming climate, according to new study led by a University of ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.